Ice Hockey

UNH Proves Too Much To Handle For The Minutemen

Minutemen fall despite Mike Kostka's shorthanded goal.

Minutemen fall despite Mike Kostka's shorthanded goal.

Oct. 28, 2005

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Amherst, MA-

UMass opened up the Hockey East portion of its schedule tonight against the UNH Wildcats, dropping the game 4-1. Despite a first period short handed goal by Mike Kotska, the Wildcats took home the win giving UMass its third loss on the season.

The first period started off with penalties, as UMass' David Leaderer was called for a penalty for contact to the head roughing within the first minute of the game. Twenty three seconds later, senior captain Marvin Degon was called for a five minute major for hitting from behind and a game misconduct, leaving the Minutemen without their top scoring threat and defensive anchors. The three UMass defenders held together and were able to escape the five on three without allowing a goal, as UNH was able to put six shots on net.

With Leaderer back on the ice, UNH's Daniel Winnik put home a shot from in front of the net to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead with 17:07 remaining in the first period. Craig Switzer passed the puck to Jacob Micflicker who then sent it to Winnik in front of the crease for a power play goal.

Not to be outdone, The Minutemen responded less than three minutes later when the penalty kill unit, headed by Stephen Werner, penetrated deep into the UNH zone. Matt Anderson passed the puck down low to Werner, who then slid it up to Mike Kostka at the blueline. Kostka's shot beat Jeff Pietrasiak cleanly, tying the game at one. The goal was Kostka's first of the season, as well as the defender's first career shorthander.



Overall, shots were 15 apiece in the opening stanza, with both teams being called for four penalties.

The Wildcats regained their one goal lead at 15:13 in the second, with Matt Fornataro being credited with the tally. Fornataro was able to find a break in the traffic in front of UMass goalie Jon Quick and stuff it in for the 2-1 lead. The goal was assisted by Brian Yandle.

The Minutemen, however, were not without scoring chances in the period. With 6:03 remaining, freshman Chris Davis fired a wide-open shot from in front of the net that Pietrisiak was able to save. Also, with merely 1:18 left in the second frame, Anderson just missed a goal after he put a shot over Pietrsasiak's left shoulder but the puck hit the crossbar.

Quick was tested with 11 UNH shots in the period, 26 overall through two.

Andrew Leach opened up the game with a goal within the opening three minutes of the third period when he scored on a point-blank shot between the hash marks. Brian Pouliot was credited with the assist on the third Wildcat goal, which gave UNH a two-goal lead.

The Minutemen fought back to keep the game close, but were unable to materialize another goal during the game and saw fewer scoring chances in the third period. The Wildcats iced the game with 1:54 remaining in the third period when Brian Yandle forwarded the puck up to Brett Hemmingway who dumped a shot in from just over the red line. The shot found its way into the empty net to close the game 4-1. Hemmingway's goal proved to be the final score, while Yandle's assist was the second of the night. Goalie Jeff Pietrsasiak was also credited with an assist on the goal.

Jon Quick turned aside 31 shots overall on the night, which is a career high for the rookie. Pietrasiak made 36 saves for the game on 37 UMass shots.

The Minutemen will take the ice tomorrow night against the No. 5 Maine Black Bears at the William D. Mullins Center. Game time is 7:00pm.


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