Pöck Wills Minutemen to Victory
Feb. 14, 2003
AMHERST, Mass. - Thomas Pöck (Klagenfurt, Austria) scored a school-record five points (2 g, 3 a), including the game-tying and game-winning goals late in the third period to lead UMass to an 8-6 victory over Connecticut on Friday night. The win evens UMass' record to 15-15-1 overall.
The two teams traded punches early on, with UConn securing the first serious threat, but UMass goalie Gabe Winer (Stoughton, Mass.) stoned three shots from in close to keep the game scoreless. UMass then broke through when Marvin Degon (Millbury, Mass.) cycled the puck in the UConn zone and dropped it off to Matt Walsh (Arlington, Mass.). Walsh fired a low shot from the left slot that deflected off UConn goalie Jason Carey's pads at the 3:22 mark for a 1-0 advantage. James Solon (Acton, Mass.) also assisted on the goal. After UConn tied the game at one moments later, UMass' top line gave the Minutemen the lead again. Stephen Werner (Chevy Chase, Md.) dropped the puck to Matt Anderson (West Islip, N.Y.) behind the net. Anderson brought the puck in front of the net, where Greg Mauldin (Holliston, Mass.) picked it up off Anderson's skates and slid a shot off Carey's pads from behind the net at the 7:16 mark. The goal was Mauldin's 17th of the season. UMass wasn't done in the first period, as Degon tallied a power-play goal at the 14:03 mark with assists by Pöck and Anderson to take a 3-1 lead into the second.
The Huskies cut the lead to 3-2 almost eight minutes into the second period. Ron D'Angelo beat Winer to a loose puck along the left boards and shot a slow-roller into the back of the net. UMass responded again when Craig MacDonald (Canton, Mass.) roofed a shot from the left slot past Carey off a Stephen Jacobs (Westminster, Mass.) rebound at the 12:52 mark for a 4-2 advantage. Pöck also assisted on the goal. UMass went up 5-2 when Pöck hit Chris Capraro (Medford, Mass.) with a lenghth-of-the-ice pass. Capraro put on a deke just inside the blue-line and rebounded his own shot at the 18:30 mark for a 5-2 cushion. The assist was Pöck's career-high third of the game. UConn cut the lead to 5-3 late in the second period, then trimmed the margin to 5-4 on a power-play goal at the 5:04 mark of the third stanza. UConn added two goals in a one-minute, 9-second span midway through the period to take a 6-5 lead with just nine minutes to play.
But the Minutemen answered on the shoulders of Thomas Pöck. Pöck netted his first goal of the evening at the 14:21 mark. Pöck skated the length of the ice and fired a low shot that trickled into the back of the net to tie the game at 6-6. Pöck added the game-winner just two minutes later at the 16:43 mark, when he fired a wrist shot through traffic that beat Carey glove-side. Tim Turner (Saginaw, Mich.) added an empty-netter with 26 seconds left to wrap up the scoring.
UMass will battle second-ranked Maine next weekend in their final home games of the season. Friday's game will be aired on Fox Sports Net as the Hockey East "Game of the Week", in conjunction with "White-Out Night". Saturday's game will be the final home game for seniors Tim Turner and Kelly Sickavish. Face-off is at 7:00 p.m. for both games.