I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the recap of tonight’s game because, quite honestly, it’s not worth my effort. It’s also not really needed. UMass lost by an 8-2 score because they looked like they would’ve rather spent their Sunday watching NFL football than than playing a Hockey East conference game. This team flat out did not show up and the result was total and complete embarrassment at the hands of the River Hawks.
Usually I try to look for positives to build off of, even in losses. This isn’t one of those times. There is absolutely nothing positive to take from this game. Even the two goals scored by the Minutemen were 5 on 3 gifts that should’ve been scored anyway. The negatives were plenty. UMass allowed a team that had scored just 13 goals in eight games, or 1.62 goals per game, to put eight total goals on the board. Ridiculous. Lowell came into the game absolutely reeling, losing four of their last five with the only win coming against last place Maine. UMass made them look like the best team in the country.
I’m sure the first question fans will ask is why Jeff Teglia made the start tonight, his first since the end of January last year. Originally I figured Coach Micheletto did not want Boyle to have to play three games in five days. But in his post game press conference the coach says Teglia got the start because the staff thought he gave the team the best chance to win. Honestly, I’m not going to make too much into the goaltending decision. Teglia was not the problem tonight as the guys in front of him did absolutely nothing to help him out. I was a little surprised to see Anthony Raiola out there instead of Mike Busillo, but again it wouldn’t have made a difference. It wasn’t talent or inexperience that hurt the Minutemen tonight. They just played like they didn’t care.
Thus ends an extremely disappointing weekend. The Minutemen had a chance to gain some real points in the standings playing the 9th and 10th place teams in the league. Instead they come away with just one point. And even that lone point came only because of some last second heroics on Friday. A lot of fans have tried to make the point that this team is much better than their record and they’d be fine once they started playing some of the teams further down the standings. I wasn’t completely sold on that, especially since last year’s team found ways to beat Boston College and Boston University, but was optimistic that the wins would come once the schedule became easier. Instead this team looks exactly as good as their 2-5-1 Hockey East record.
If UMass loses on Tuesday to a Vermont team now ahead of them in the standings, I think it’ll be time to rethink the expectations of this team. The hope was Micheletto would be able to take over this veteran UMass squad and find success quickly by making minor adjustments. After suffering one of the worst losses in the program’s recent history, one has to wonder if perhaps that was a bit too presumptuous.
Fear The Triangle Player of the Game – Mike Pereira
Pereira was one of the few, maybe the only, player who appear to be ready to play tonight, scoring a goal on six shots.
Luckily for all of us there are no game stories available from this game currently.