Minutemen Knock Off Terriers, 2-1
Jan. 7, 2004
BOSTON, Mass. - The University of Massachusetts hockey team scored a goal in each of the first two periods, then held on for a 2-1 victory over Boston University. The win was UMass' first win in 19 tries at Walter Brown Arena, and moved the Minutemen's record to 10-6-5 overall and 6-4-2 in Hockey East, good for second place. Boston University falls to 5-6-6 overall and 2-5-2 in Hockey East.
UMass had the game's first power play, just 2:21 into the contest when BU's Gregg Johnson was whistled for roughing. Marvin Degon (Millbury, Mass.) had UMass' only chance that nearly slipped past Terriers' goalie Sean Fields early in the man advantage. As the power play was ending, Nick Kuiper (Beaconsfield, Quebec) tried to tuck the puck into the corner, but the shot slipped wide. The Terriers caught Johnson coming out of the box as the defenseman Kuiper was caught in the offensive zone. Johnson's partial breakaway shot was shoulder away by Gabe Winer (Stoughton, Mass) to keep the game scoreless. Stephen Jacobs (Westminster, Mass.) had a great opportunity after picking off a BU pass, but his shot went into Fields' body seven minutes ito the game. The Minutemen then got on the board at the 9:02 mark after Stephen Werner (Chevy Chase, Md.) got to a loose puck in the BU corner, cycled the puck back to Kuiper, who then flipped a shot towards Fields through traffic, that fooled the senior goalie and found the back of the net for a 1-0 advantage. Craig MacDonald (Canton, Mass.) also assisted on the goal. The Terriers went on their first power play and Kenny Magowan had a good look to the wide post that Winer steered aside with his glove. UMass again stayed on the offensive, and had a 2-on-1 break with Peter Trovato (North Attleboro, Mass.) and Werner, but Trovato's high shot was pushed aside by Fields. BU then went on its second power play late in the period, and after some anxious moments, the Minutemen killed off the penalty and led 1-0 after one stanza.
At the start of the second period, the Terriers used a UMass turnover in neutral ice and Mark Mullen slid a shot through Winer's legs to tie the game at 1-1 just 14 seconds into the second frame. Frantisek Skladany and Kenny Magowan assisted on the netter. The two teams then played the next seven minutes fairly cautious, mounting no serious offensive threats. The Terriers had a good shift, with 12 minutes left in the frame, but Winer turned aside three shots to keep the game tied at one. UMass got the first big break after a BU penalty 14 minutes into the second frame gave UMass its second power play of the game. The Minutemen took advantage when Thomas Pöck (Klagenfurt, Austria) unleashed a rocket from inside the blue line that MacDonald tipped from just in front of the net top shelf at the 14:43 mark for a 2-1 lead. Werner also assisted on the goal for his second helper of the evening. Shortly after UMass' goal, the Terriers went on their thrid power play of the game, but the Minutemen had perhaps their best PK effort of the game, killing off the BU chance with no shots allowed on goal. The two teams then skated out the period with no further damage done.
The Minutemen nearly added to the lead early in the third as James Solon (Acton, Mass.) and Kevin Jarman (Aurora, Ontario) both had good looks at the net that were either kicked aside by Fields or wide. After a good BU shift, the Terriers then went on a huge power play six minutes into the third period, after a Minuteman penalty. But again, the UMass penalty kill looked very impressive, killing off the Terrier chance easily. The Terriers then started to tilt the ice, but the Minuteman defense and Winer stopped every Boston U. chance. The Terriers went on another power play with seven minutes to play after a Minuteman interference penalty, and after one great save by Winer, the Minutemen killed off the chance and immediately after the kill, UMass received a huge break, going on its third power play of the game, following a John Laliberte penalty. UMass played cautious, setting up in the BU zone for much of the attack, but getting no real looks at Fields. The Terriers pulled Fields with just under a minute to play, and nearly tied the game up. BU appeared to tie the game at 2-2 on a scramble in front of the net, but the goal was disallowed as the net was knocked off its moorings before the goal was scored. The Minutemen then ran out the clock to earn their long-awaited 10th win of the season, ending an eight-game winless streak. Boston U. outshot UMass, 23-20, with Winer turning away 22 shots to earn his 10th victory as well.
The Minutemen will travel to Montreal for an exhibition game against Quebec-Trois Rivieries on Saturday, Jan. 10. UMass will then continue its season with a two-game set at Maine on Jan. 16-17. Face-off for both games against the Black Bears is set for 7:00 p.m.. For ticket information, call the UMass ticket office at 1-866-UMASS-TIX.