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2019 Playoffs Preview: USPHL Premier / Southeast Division

By Jim DenHollander/USPHL.com, 02/21/19, 2:30PM EST

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The Hampton Roads Whalers and Charlotte Rush occupied the top two positions in the Premier Southeast Division from nearly beginning to end this season and they are looking to return to Nationals where they finished as the final two last season.

Their overall records might not be quite as dominant as the previous season, but these two are heavy favorites heading into their division playoffs.

The Whalers (37-5-0-1) didn’t lose a game until it’s 20th match in early November and that strong start left no doubt the Whalers were once again a near-impossible team to beat in the Premier League.  

The Rush (33-8-1-1) would have finished on top in most of the other divisions with its 68 points, but in the Southeast, it left the team seven points away.

The Richmond Generals (28-13-2-1) faced a tough challenge down the stretch, comfortably in third spot, but with not much of a chance of getting close to the top and the Carolina Eagles (22-20-1-1) grabbed the fourth and final playoff spot with a week to spare. 

For the Atlanta Jr. Kings (19-22-3-0) and Potomac Patriots (8-31-1-4), the playoff door will be closed this season. They can gain some consolation knowing they competed in one of the league’s toughest divisions.

 

Eagles @ Whalers 

Saturday, Feb. 23, 6:30 p.m. ET

Sunday, Feb. 24, 7 p.m. ET

Monday, Feb. 25, 1:30 p.m. ET (if necessary)

All games to be played at Chilled Ponds, Chesapeake, Va.

Separated by almost 30 points this season, the defending league champion Whalers are obviously the favorite. 

The Eagles will be looking to carry some momentum from putting up a great fight in their final two meetings of the season, a 6-5 win and a 6-4 defeat Feb. 2-3 in a weekend split that helped them clinch the final playoff spot. 

The four previous meetings, all before Christmas and all at Chesapeake, all went to the Whalers.

 

Generals @ Rush 

Saturday, Feb. 23, 7 p.m. ET

Sunday, Feb. 24, 6:30 p.m. ET

Monday, Feb. 25, 12:30 p.m. ET

All games to be played at Chilled Ponds, Chesapeake, Va.

The Generals came up with some big games against the Whalers this season, but won only the final meeting with the Rush, a 5-4 margin in overtime in the second of two at Richmond, Jan. 13.

The Rush captured a 6-4 win the previous day and took the three previous meetings as well all on home ice.

All games in these two series are being played at the home rink of the Whalers and the two winners will get a weekend off to prepare for the National Championship tournament that will take place beginning March 9 in the Boston area.