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Friday Recap

Well it wasn’t pretty and frankly UMass had no business winning this game, but win they did and the Minutemen stole two Hockey East points from UNH.  UMass came out well in the first and jumped to the 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Lecomte and Braun.  Even though UMass had the early lead they still didn’t look all that sharp as they were considerably outshot in the first stanza and went 0-for-2 on the power play.  Braun’s play has seemed a little off as of late but I thought he played considerably better through most of tonight.

In the second the wheels came completely off for the Minutemen.  The defense looked really disinterested in playing any semblance of defense and continually left Paul Dainton to fend for himself.  Luckily, Dainton was up to the task and single handedly kept UMass in the game behind a career high 42 saves, and quite a few of them were spectacular.  Neither of the first two goals were his fault as the defense was slow to clear the puck in front of him.  The third could probably be hung on him as he made a kick save from far out that rebounded right into the slot.

The third period was more of the same with the defense getting a little better but the offense seemed completely disjointed.  The only line that consistently looked good was the Lecomte/Langeraap/Ortiz line which worked hard all night.  Unfortunately the top line looked out of sorts which is strange because they seemed to adjust fine to the Danny Hobbs addition last week.  Not so much tonight.  Not to say any individual player on the line played badly, they were just never on the same page.  Hobbs’ play was impressive again tonight and I’m glad to see him start to establish himself as a legitimate Hockey East player.  While UMass was able to put some pressure on in the third they still were unable to generate any real scoring chances.  That is until 11 seconds left when Wellman found himself with the puck all alone on the left side of the net after Braun was somehow able to get it over to him despite getting pushed down on the ice.  Wellman sends it to OT and in the extra frame Boehm puts a hard shot on net that the struggling Brian Foster just couldn’t find and the game ends.  It wasn’t a pretty win, I’m not sure it was a deserved win, but sometimes the puck bounces the right way at the right time and you come away with a win.  Hopefully tomorrow night the Minutemen will be able to keep an early lead and avoid a similar situation.

Fear The Triangle Player of the Game – Paul Dainton
It seems that whenever a team wins in overtime the first star or player of the game always goes to the guy who scores the game-winner.  Certainly David Boehm deserves a ton of credit not only for his overtime goal but for his solid play throughout.  However if Paul Dainton doesn’t play as well as he did the game never goes to overtime.  Hell, the Minutemen could have easily found themselves losing after the first period without some key saves from Dainton.

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The Republican recap decides to twist the knife a little by reminding us all of Bubby Butler’s OT winner in the Hockey East semifinals. 

Dick Umile says UNH played hard and has nothing to show for it in the USCHO recap.

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A couple of other interesting results in Hockey East tonight.  Maine beat Northeastern 6-2 at Matthews while BU continues to lose after dropped a 6-3 decision to Merrimack.

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2 Comments

  1. You mean to tell me that UMass won a game it maybe didn’t deserve to win because its goaltender kept them in it, and the scored timely goals?

    That is exactly what good teams do.

    I don’t get to see them play frequently. In fact, I’ve only the BU game this season, but I’m excited to get back out there when I cover the BC game on Dec. 4 to see if they can sustain winning hockey for that long.

    Looking at their schedule the pre-Thanksgiving game with Vermont stands out. Whether or not, if they win that game at The Gutt I will be a believer. Vermont plays them so tough every year. If they can beat the Cats, they just may have something.

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  2. Harold

     /  November 14, 2009

    I’m with the ‘had no business winning this game’ school. They sure didn’t win it on the ice. Bad passes, running around looking lost, and hanging Dainton out to dry throughout the game.

    The wildcats dominated the game except for the few minutes in the first after Sislo’s breakaway attempt was stoned by Dainton. That put a little spark into the boys and they got those 2 goals.

    They play the same way tonight and it won’t be pretty.

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