Massachusetts Loses 1-0 Heartbreaker to Maine
Nov. 9, 2002
ORONO, Maine - UMass had its chances, but the eleventh-ranked Black Bears scored a 1-0 Hockey East Conference win over the Minutemen on Saturday night. The loss drops UMass' record to 2-4-0 overall and 1-3-0 in the Hockey East. Maine is 6-1-1 and 1-0-0.
Both teams had several chances in the first period, but couldn't capitalize on them. The Black Bears outshot the Minutemen in the opening 20 minutes, 5-4, but freshman netminder Gabe Winer (Stoughton, Mass.) stopped all five Maine shots, including two coming from point-blank range. The Minutemen also had three power-play opportunities, including a 55-second 5-on-3 advantage, but couldn't convert.
The Black Bears got on the board early in the second period when Colin Shields banged in a goal from the right circle at a near-impossible angle off the crossbar. The goal was assisted by Robert Liscak and Cliff Loya at the 2:38 mark of the period. UMass had a golden opportunity to tie the game late in the second period, but the Black Bears killed off UMass' only power-play opportunity of the period to preserve the Maine lead. Winer also made perhaps the biggest save of the night on the same Minuteman power play as Maine's Todd Jackson found himself alone on a shorthanded breakaway. Jackson attempted a backhanded shot from the left crease, but Winer made a spectacular kick-save to keep the Maine lead at 1-0.
Winer again came up big on Maine's third power-play of the evening. Winer kicked away four shots, including two from just outside the goalie crease, on the Maine extra-man opportunity to again keep the Minutemen within striking distance. UMass then started to attack offensively, firing several close shots on Maine freshman goaltender Jimmy Howard, Howard, who broke a Maine school record for longest shutout streak and is a former member of the U.S. National Developmental Team Program, stopped all 20 UMass shots to record his third shutout of the young season. Not to be outdone, Winer stopped 24 of 25 Black Bear shots and matched Howard save for save.
The Minutemen return to the Mullins Center for a 7:00 p.m. game against UMass Lowell on Nov. 15.