UMass Skates Past Merrimack 4-1 On Tuesday Night
Dec. 6, 2005
AMHERST, Mass. - The University of Massachusetts (5-8-0, 3-5-0 Hockey East) earned its third conference victory by defeating Merrimack College (4-8-2, 1-6-2 HEA) on Tuesday night by the score of 4-1. Senior captains Marvin Degon and Stephen Werner tallied a goal and an assist each in the first meeting between UMass Head Coach Don Cahoon and current Merrimack coach/former UMass assistant coach Mark Dennehy. Tonight's win was the fourth time in the last five games that the Minutemen were able to secure a victory, and senior goalie Gabe Winer played in his 100th career game.
Neither team made a dent in the scoreboard in the opening stanza, with shots at 8-5 in favor of the home team. Both UMass and Merrimack were afforded power play opportunities-Minuteman Scott Crowder at 10:28 for obstruction-interference and Warrior Jordan Hart at 13:04 for slashing-but neither team converted and they went into the locker rooms scoreless.
UMass took the 1-0 lead at 2:57 with Chris Davis' fourth goal of the season. Werner started the play in the Massachusetts zone, passing the puck up to linemate Chris Capraro. Capraro and Davis skated in two-on-one, with the rookie sliding the backhander past Warrior goalie Jim Healey. The line of Capraro-Werner-Davis has combined for seven goals and eight assists for 15 points in the last five games.
Redshirt junior Matt Anderson scored his first goal since Oct. 15 (at Clarkson) at the 13:03 mark of the second, giving the Minutemen the 2-0 lead. Freshman Topher Bevis took the initial shot from the point, with the rebound coming out to Anderson. Crowder also assisted on the goal, Anderson's third of the season.
The Warriors brought it back to within one at 14:39. With redshirt sophomore Patrick Dineen in the penalty box for obstruction-interference, Mike Alexiou made a pass to Matt Johnson who was all alone in front of the UMass net. Johnson's shot beat Winer between the pads and the post, making it a 2-1 game. Rob Ricci also assisted on the goal.
At the end of two, shots were 16-12 UMass.
The Minutemen regained their two-goal lead at 15:24, breaking Degon's six-game scoreless streak with his first even-strength tally of the season. Freshman Jordan Virtue collected his first collegiate point by winning the faceoff back to Degon at the point. The puck trickled past Healey for the 3-1 score.
With 10 seconds to play, Werner tallied the empty net goal to give the Minutemen the 4-1 victory. That goal marked the 45th of his career, and was assisted by P.J. Fenton and Degon.
Winer picked up his second win of the season as he donned the Maroon & White for his 100th career game. Throughout his career at UMass, Winer has won 43 contests and made 2,178 saves.
UMass returns to action on Friday, Dec. 9 when the Minutemen head to Boston College. Faceoff is set for 7:00 p.m. The teams return to the Mullins Center on Saturday.
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