UMass Athletics
Former UMass defenseman Mike Kostka, who made an appearance in the Stanley Cup Playoffs last year as a rookie with the Toronto Maple Leafs, returns to the postseason for the second time in his career with his new club, the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning open up their first round action against the Montreal Canadiens tonight at 7 p.m. on CNBC. The entire first round playoff schedule for Tampa Bay vs. Montreal is listed below.

 Mike Kostka (UMass Years: 2004-08) - Tampa Bay Lightning
Regular Season Statistics:
 28 GP, 4 G, 7 A,11 Pts, 8 PIM, +10
First Round Playoff Schedule
DateOpponents Time (ET) | TV
 Wednesday, April 16
 MTL at TBL 7 p.m. | CNBC, SUN
 Friday, April 18
 MTL at TBL 7 p.m. | CNBC, FS-F
 Sunday, April 20 TBL at MTL 7 p.m. | CNBC, SUN
 Tuesday, April 22 TBL at MTL 7 p.m. | NHLN, FS-F
 Thursday, April 24 MTL at TBL (If Nec.) 7 p.m. | TBD
 Sunday, April 27 TBL at MTL (If Nec.) TBD
 Tuesday, April 29 MTL at TBL (If Nec.) TBD

 
Matt Vautour had this piece in today's Daily Hampshire Gazette on former UMass pitcher Jeremy Demers, who is currently battling cancer.

When he's got a baseball in his hand, it's hard to tell Jeremy Demers has cancer.

Most of the weight he originally lost from his 6-foot, broad-shouldered frame has come back and so far his hair has been unaffected by chemotherapy.

When his right arm reaches back and sends the ball toward the plate, it's not hard to see the standout pitcher he was at Easthampton High School, the University of Massachusetts and the New England College Baseball League.

He has a beard now, and at 31, Demers still looks ready to battle hitters.

Read more: Former Easthampton, UMass pitcher Jeremy Demers stares down fight with cancer

Herald: Doyle, UMass Football In Transition

Rich Thompson of the Boston Herald has a story on the transition UMass football has undergone with Mark Whipple back as head coach. At not other position is the transition more evident than at quarterback with the switch from a spread, shot gun offense to a pro-style scheme.

Gazette: Mark Whipple, UMass set for spring football game

Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has a preview of Wednesday night's UMass Football Spring Game which kicks off at 7 PM. The format of the game will be the first string offense vs. the first string defense followed by the second team units.

Republican: Five questions with wide receiver Tajae Sharpe

Dan Malone of the Springfield Republican includes Tajae Sharpe in today's edition of "5 Questions With..." Sharpe is one of the top offensive skill position players returning in 2014 and is expected to be a big playmaker for the Minutemen in Mark Whipple's new pro-style offense.

After wins over George Washington and George Mason last week, the UMass women's lacrosse team (13-1) moved to No. 11 in the IWLCA Coaches Poll and No. 12 in the Brine Media Poll. The new Lacrosse Magazine rankings have the Minutewomen checking in at No. 9 overall. In the newest RPI report from the NCAA, UMass ranks No. 9 as well.


Arthur Hayden of the Daily Collegian has a recap of the UMass tennis team's weekend versus Fairleigh Dickinson and Sacred Heart. Hayden states that several nagging injuries have forced adjustments to the lineups throughout the season and came into play during the 4-3 loss at FDU last Thursday.

Nick Canelas of the Daily Collegian has a preview of tonight's UMass football Spring Game which starts at 7 PM. Canelas breaks down the format of the game and what fans should look for from the Minutemen as spring camp concludes tonight.

NCAA.com: Women's Lacrosse RPI At No. 10 In Latest NCAA Report

With three games left in the regular season, the UMass women's lacrosse team holds a No. 10 RPI in the latest report released by the NCAA. UMass has a 13-1 overall record and is looking to make its fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. UMass is the highest ranked Atlantic 10 team and could finish among the top 11 programs for the third straight year.

Following a strong end to his 2012 season as a freshman, kicker Blake Lucas experienced some disappointed on the field last season. With renewed confidence this spring, the rising junior is looking forward to making a strong comeback according to Dan Malone of the Springfield Republican.

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