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BU Recap

Burn the third jerseys!

Ok, maybe that’s a little overboard.  Actually I liked the new jerseys overall.  A simple design with the Minuteman logo on the front and maroon coloring along the shoulders.  The great thing about designing jerseys for UMass is there’s no pressure.  Because whatever you do you’ll never be able to design a worse or better jersey than the triangle.  Period.

Anyway, onto the game.  Amazing to think that UMass has played four games against ranked opponents and has only been outscored by three goals (if you don’t count that empty netter in Minnesota).  Even more amazing is that UMass could’ve won a couple of those if they only executed better.  UMass lost the game last night because they took off a substantial part of the second period and made two huge breakdowns late that resulted in two breakaway goals.

Let’s talk about the breakaway goals.  Down 2-1 late in a second period in which UMass disappeared for long stretches Joe Pereira comes out of the penalty box, heads straight to the opposing blue line, collects a pass and goes in and scores.  Inexcusable.  Really inexcusable with a couple assistant captains on the ice.  A guy coming out of the box is just an awareness thing.  Maybe UMass had a little tunnel vision on the power play, since it struggled again tonight, and wasn’t paying attention to the big picture.  And then late they give up the puck at their own blueline and allow Sahir Gill to come in and net what ends up being the gamewinner.  Two key plays that could’ve been prevented.

Those two plays are the most obvious ones to point to, but what also hurt them was the power play and the inability to generate decent shots.   For the second straight game UMass could manage just one lonely shot on the power play.  Luckily they made the most of its as Darren Rowe scored with it.  But it has to improve.  But the power play was just part of the bigger problem on offense.  UMass took the 1-0 lead in the first despite being outshot 10-4.  They got a little better as the game went along but still were outshot 37-26 for the game.  It’s not for lack of effort, I thought the team was buzzing all night long.  They’re just not quite hitting on passes, not quite finding the open spots, not quite skating where they should be without the puck.  I was shocked to look at the score sheet after the game and see Mike Pereira and Conor Sheary with zero shots on the net for the game, because I thought those two played excellent, especially Sheary.  But I think that goes to show that there’s a tough time getting in good position to shoot and then getting it on net.  What is interesting is UMass seemed to be able to do the most damage with some of BU’s better players on the ice, like Alex Chiasson and Corey Trivino.

There were a lot of positives tonight as well.  Once again, this team does not give up when done.  Doesn’t.  Down late by two goals they still were able to make the last few seconds mean something.  That aspect of this team is very impressive.  I thought Danny Hobbs played very well last night.  He ended up +2 on the game with 3 shots and like he did previously was able to have a key steal and possession on the penalty kill.  Jeff Teglia had another solid game.  33 saves and two of the goals he gave up were on the breakaway, though I thought he could’ve made a little better move on the Pereira goal, and even he admitted as much afterward.  But it’s tough to get on a goaltender for giving up breakaway goals.  Brendan Gracel continues to be enjoyable to watch, the energy and skill he brings to the ice every shift is unmatched.  He’s due for a real breakout game soon.

I know a lot of people are probably talking about the Mike Pereira goal that was waved off for offsides.  I received a lot of messages when it happened, including from the Northeastern press box of all places, saying it was on sides.  I haven’t seen it, but it seemed on for me.  It’s certainly unfortunate since the goal would’ve tied it up.  However UMass made enough mistakes afterward to make it moot.  Plus as Matt Vautour mentioned after the game, just because most in the crowd didn’t hear the whistle doesn’t mean Kieran Millan didn’t.  He may have already knew the play was dead and wanted nothing to do with stopping Pereira’s shot.  We’ll never know.  Better execution and it won’t have to come down to potentially missed calls.

It was nice to see the students come out in force for the game.  The line when I showed up at 5:30 was amazing going all the way back to the ticket office.  It brought me back to my days waiting in line for basketball in the mid-90s.  Coach Parker, Toot, and Jeff Teglia all mentioned how impressive the crowd was after the game.  The team continues to have a lot to build on, going toe to toe with some very talented teams early on.  But they have a lot to work on as well.  That should keep them busy in practice as they prepare to take on Providence for the newly traditional Halloween series.  Trick or treat?  We’ll see.

Fear The Triangle Player of the Game – Darren Rowe
Rowe continues to impress on offense and seems poised for an impactful sophomore season with his two goals last night bringing his total to four for the season.  I know I’ve pointed out that I’d like to see him on forward more because I think his skills are better suited up front, but he played decent on defense tonight when he was back there.  In fact I thought he had a key blocked shot late, seemed to take it right in the gut in fact, that helped keep UMass in the game.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention his first goal was setup with a spectacular pass across the slot from Gracel.

Δ

Here’s the game recap from the Gazette.

The Boston Hockey Blog has full coverage as well.

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13 Comments

  1. Matt

     /  October 23, 2010

    Yo students,

    CALM DOWN. There’s a line between being passionate sports fan and out of control human beings. That line was crossed last night. Cheer on UMass, boo the refs, be loud, but don’t get out of control.

    Like

  2. jjmc85

     /  October 23, 2010

    I am a huge fan of the new Jerseys. I want one.

    Like

  3. ganderson

     /  October 23, 2010

    I like the jerseys- whether the play was offsides or not- the BU goalie clearly relaxed after the whistle blew!

    Like

  4. 3Sheets

     /  October 23, 2010

    First glance at the new Minutemen (minus TV highlights). Interesting rocks that you picked out Hobbs and I couldn’t find him all night. I kept waiting for him to do something with the puck and except for a single move in the third when he swept in from the wing on his backhand he seemed invisible to me. If you contrast him with a kid like Charlie Coyle who was downright dominant last night then it becomes obvious that Hobbs is what he has always been….a marginal third line player. I was impressed by Sheary as well and think Gracel will improve as he adapts to the game. Periera is talented but gets caught on the wrong side of the puck. it will be interesting to see if his defensive lapses cost him ice time. I also liked Phillips on D. He made a great little flip pass through the neutral zone that created a 2 0n 1 and he is so big. Not a fluid-skating high energy type but one of those players i would classify as “interesting.” Teglia is a disaster. He drops to one knee on his stick side with and the paddle across the ice on every shot! Breakaways actually give a goalie the best opportunity to make a save because there are no visual obstructions and no deflections (which account for over 85 percent of goals) and he got schooled on both of them. Having said that, I love this kid. He plays with flair and fights like hell. He’ll never give up on a puck or a play and his team is going to lay out for him…case in point, Syner, who I though was real strong until he took one on the knee blocking a shot. He was marginalized after that play and I hope its just a bruise. The kid’s skating ability and his hockey sense are about a mile and a half ahead of everyone else. he had a few shifts in the first that were fun to watch. Did Umass really I get a “too many men on the ice” penalty? Really? How does that happen game after game, year after year? The team scores to come within one, they have back to back incredible shifts, and we get called for that again. That was the defining point of the game to me. Someone look up this stat please. I would bet that this team averages 6 to 10 of these a year! and it is one of the rarest calls in the game, only slightly ahead of the penalty shot. Oh well, fun game and great crowd.

    Like

  5. ddudeman

     /  October 23, 2010

    I was in the student section and heard the whistle and could see Millan relax and not try to stop a shot that wasn’t going to matter.

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  6. anonoymous

     /  October 23, 2010

    exactly, the ref blew the whistle a few seconds before the shot was taken.

    Like

  7. HazMatKat

     /  October 23, 2010

    Rocks -good post as always!

    Saw a few great moments last night and a couple I would like to forget.

    The breakaway goal by Pereira was a XMas present and was inexcusable as you said. Pereira read the play coming down the ice very well and unfortunately our guys did not.
    Teglia was solid for most of the night but there were a couple instances when he came out of the net to play a puck and it almost came back to bite us, as BU came screaming up the ice. I did see that Teglia did drop to one knee quite a bit, but I can not knock him for doing this as that may be what he is comfortable with. If he stops the puck I don’t care how he gets it done, Dainton and several of his other predecessors had their small quirks.

    As far as good things that I saw, Rowe was on fire most of the night, Kublin was a major physical presence right from the first minutes of the game, stuffing guys into the boards. Which leads me to a really good thing I saw Fri night, the team is physical when it needs to be but does not take it to the point where they draw excessive penalties. The younger guys really stepped up when they needed to, one player that was not mentionned in your post, that I thought really played well was Filiou(sp?-sorry) This kid drove hard towards the goal on every shift and followed the shots then fought like a dog in the corners. That brings me to another good point-the guys on this squad have been able to go into the corner in the offensive zone and tear the defense right off the puck, we did not see much of this last year, for the most part fights in the corners were won in our end by our defenseman.

    As for the “no-goal/offsides” call. I have to side with the ref on that as I raised my brow as I saw UMass come up the ice and expected it before they blew the whistle. The refs were a little “whistle-happy” at that point. Correct me if I am wrong but I think we saw 3 offsides calls(possibly 4) in the span of 2 min. That said the officiating was very fair but unfortunately it cost us the goal. -could’ve been worse if we had been gig’ed for shooting after the whistle(can someone tell me what the penalty for this is?-just read about it but did not catch the details)

    Like

  8. HazMatKat

     /  October 23, 2010

    As for the “too many men on the ice” call and the stats- I’ll disagree and say we may draw 2 a year – but that is 2 too many, for any player/team playing at the D1-Hockey East level-comes down to paying attention

    Like

  9. Puck Pagan

     /  October 24, 2010

    The too many men penalty is a direct reflection on the bench (ie: Coach). As far as the love fest with Rowe, as Rocks has said he should be a forward. He is a disaster on the back end, he was the one who was burnt for the game winning goal. Put him on the wing and let him use his offensive skills but do not let him play defense.

    Like

  10. Anonymous

     /  October 25, 2010

    You’re and idiot and your post here as well as your post regarding Cahoon on Hoops.com clearly proves that point. You know nothing about the game of hockey other than there’s a couple of guys with masks at each end of the rink – and that’s probably giving you too much credit.

    Like

    • I want to keep these comment sections free and open for fans to discuss all aspects of the program, good and bad. But please keep the discussions constructive and avoid personal attacks.

      If you disagree with Puck Pagan, tell them why.

      Like

      • Anonymous

         /  October 28, 2010

        You talk out of both sides of your mouth.

        You allow a post stating “this player is a disaster – etc” – as if that is not a personal attack – as well as comments made on the teams coach that you are certainly aware of on my on hoops.com. – yet it appears you’re admonishing my post – versus the individual that made these statements.

        Enjoy your blog – but disappointed in your thought process – seems you will allow individuals to attack players/coaches and post comments with what you’re asking for me not to do – avoid personal attacks.

        That said – next time I’ll just call this individual ill informed – rather than idiot. Hopefully that will satisfy your requirement.

        Fortunately, I’m fairly certain the MASS’es all know better.

        Like

        • I am well aware that Puck Pagan has a much more negative view of things going on in the program than I do. But I didn’t create this blog only for people who see UMass hockey how I do, nor do I want it being a cheerleader for the program. I want UMass fans to be able to openly talk about their team. PP’s comment essentially boiled down to being critical of Rowe’s defensive abilities and saying he’d be better playing up front. I’ve said the same myself. Might I word it differently? Yes. But I didn’t think it was completely out of line. Don’t worry, if I think someone is going over the top on one of the UMass student athletes, I’ll do something about it. But my standards of such may not necessarily match up with yours.

          Why I wrote that in response in your post was that it brought nothing to the conversation. It was just name-calling and nothing else. You didn’t even try to refute PP’s points about Rowe or Cahoon. And that’s what I’m trying to avoid. Call them ill-informed, call them whatever, but add more to why you think that way next time.

          You may think I’m talking out of both sides of my mouth, I think I’m just trying to walk a fine line when it comes to interaction on the blog. It’s tough to have an honest conversation of the team’s and players’ performances without sometimes having to be critical. I’m trying to be as fair as possible, even when I myself don’t always agree with the comments people are posting here.

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