Friday Recap

Friday’s game against Providence went very differently than I anticipated.  In my preview I mentioned that I thought the offense would continue to be strong, the defense would be a weak spot, and with Dainton in net the goaltending would be solid.  Instead the offense struggled, mightily at times, the defense was pretty good for most of the game, and Dainton let in a couple goals he probably shouldn’t have.

To the credit of Dainton and his leadership skills he pretty much threw himself under the bus after the game, saying he wanted the first and third goals back and that he “owes the guys for this one” since they bailed him out and got a tie.  He did say he feels 100% and that the injury was not a factor.  To his defense he did make some very tough saves to keep UMass in the game, especially early on and in the second when the offense was struggling. 

Overall I liked how the defense played in front of him, it may have been their best game so far that I’ve seen (I did not watch the game at BU).  The only glaring mistake I can remember was on the 2nd goal when Joel Hanley let a guy get around him and to the front of the net.  I thought the timing of the goals hurt the Minutemen a lot, with PC scoring with under two minutes left in the first to tie it at 1 and then allowing the goal with a second left in the second to knot it at 2.  If UMass is able to get to the locker room with the lead in both those periods, it may be a very different outcome.  Instead Providence carries momentum over to the next period which was especially evident to start the third.

Offensively the Minutemen started out well, generating 16 shots in the first period including 7 over two power plays in that time.  Getting the power play going was one of the better things to take away from last night.  Of course Darren Rowe’s game-tying goal came on the extra man as well.  After the first though the team struggled to maintain constant pressure on PC goaltender Alex Beaudry.  In fact the Minutemen were outshot 13-4 in the second, their second straight game coming out flat in the middle period.  At one point in the third the Friar were outshooting UMass 31-21.  Of course they then turned on the jets, as we’ve seen over and over this season, and were able to tie it up and get back in the game late.  One of these games though I’d like to see that kind of intensity in the first or second and see the team get off to a good start and establish more than a one goal lead.

Individually I thought a lot of players stood out on offense.  Brendan Gracel had another good game.  His vision and puck moving skills are stellar and he his able to get a shot off when needed (his 6 shots led the team) but he just has to work on making them count.  He’s second on the team in shots to T.J. Syner but still without a goal.  I foresee one coming in the near future.  I thought Troy Power had maybe his best game so far, being very active in the corners and moving the puck well.  Brian Keane and Marc Concannon both played very well, with Concannon assisting on the Mike Pereira goal.  On defense Colin Shea had one of his better games of the season so far.

All in all it wasn’t a bad game.  Frustrating, but not horrible.  It will be interesting to see how they bounce back tonight when this young, speedy team plays its first game of the year on small ice.  I’ll also be interested to see if Coach Cahoon has Teglia in net, so as not to overwork Dainton while he’s coming back from an injury, or puts Paul back in right away feeling he has something to prove from last night.

Fear The Triangle Player of the Game – Darren Rowe
I thought a lot of players did very well last night while no one really stood out as being outstanding.  So the player of the game goes to the guy who got the game-tying goal with under four left in the 3rd.  Rowe made sure to be in the right spot on the power play when he was able to deflect T.J. Syner shot/pass into the back of the net.  Rowe is now tied for 8th in the country in goals scored and leads Hockey East in total goals with Maine’s Spencer Abbott.


Here’s the recap from the Gazette.

Coach Cahoon says he doesn’t think the team should “feel too good” with the tie in the Republican recap.  Want a chuckle?  Check out the caption of the first picture in the story.


David Leaderer has been called up to the Albany Devils from the ECHL.  Leaderer had two shots and a penalty last night in his AHL debut.