Advertisements

Recap: UMass Embarrassed By UVM 11-1

This blog is called Fear The Triangle.  The triangle is in reference to the odd looking jerseys that the Massachusetts hockey program wore in the 1990s when the program was restored.  The blog name is also supposed to be a way to call out how far the program has come since those triangle years when the team was regularly the doormat of Hockey East and rarely won.  It’s also a way to remember the unheralded players during that era that helped build the program to the point that it was competing for a Hockey East championship and NCAA tournament bids in the mid-2000s.  Ironically some of those triangle-era players were in town yesterday for UMass hockey alumni weekend and were on hand to witness the 11-1 shellacking the Minutemen took last night.

Those triangle teams suffered similar losses, though none quite as bad as last night.  Yes, those triangle teams were bad, but that was really due to talent disparity created when coach Joe Mallen was handed the task of taking a program from zero to Hockey East in less than a year and a half.  Despite the challenge of going up against the best programs in the country those teams tried and worked hard every night.  I experienced more lopsided losses from that time than I care to remember, but I don’t remember a lot of times, if at all, when those teams just flat out quit.

That’s what I saw last night though.  I team that gave up somewhere during the second period.  They quit and decided the game wasn’t worth their effort anymore.  I always try to avoid saying a team quit, because that’s something that’s not easily determined.  Lopsided losses happen for a variety of reasons.  I avoided saying it to describe the third period meltdown against BU to start the season because though they played horrible it still looked like they were trying.  Last night they stopped trying.  I’ve never seen players just stand in their own zone and let opponents skate by them without getting a body or stick on them and allow them to freely shoot upon their goalie.  That’s what happened for the final 30 minutes of last night’s game.  No effort.  No fight.  No pride.

The good news is the team won’t have long to sit and stew about last night’s embarrassment.  Not only do they play two days from now, but they have a chance of redemption against this same Catamount team.  If there is a lack of effort and fight in that game, then we have a serious problem with his hockey program.  If they fight hard and execute their game plan against the Catamounts then last night could be see as a turning point.  Everyone involved with this program (coaches, players, and administrators) should’ve woken up this morning and asked themselves “What can I do to assure that what happened last night never, ever happens again?”  What transpired last night was simply unacceptable.

Fear The Triangle Player of the Game
Player of the game goes to any fan who attended last night’s debacle and still decides to attend another hockey game this season.

Recap & Box Score from UMass Athletics.

Game recap from the Collegian and this piece in which Micheletto apologized to the fans who attended.

USCHO game recap.

Burlington Free Press notes that this tied a 1979 Catamount record for most goals scored.

Advertisements

15 Comments

  1. Chris

     /  November 23, 2014

    Really sad how far this program has fallen. UM right now cannot out-recruit even Lowell, which is also sad. Players know to go to other programs in HE where the hockey team is a priority…not pushing a money-losing football pipe dream as the current Athletic Dept is doing. I guess fans will have to wait until McCutcheon is gone for hockey to ever get back on its feet and be respectable.

    Like

  2. Robert Vogel

     /  November 23, 2014

    We became Minuteman Hockey fans about 15 years ago. We had (4) season tickets for eleven consecutive years and only missed two games during that whole time. We dropped them a couple of years ago when the “Umass sports powers to be” decided to screw with the seating that we fans had for over a decade. We do still attend many UM hockey games, but we now also take in other college hockey games with in a two hour radius of the greater Springfield area.
    However, we were at the game last night and the dinner bell rang for us on goal #8. We had suffered long enough through this so called spectacle, of what really could be called……. “Garbage On Ice.” Attending this game was a total rip off for the fans that showed up. The miles they drove to get there, the gas they wasted, and the price of the tickets were all a waste.
    This is a team that has definite PROBLEMS. The goal tending is totally sporadic, the defense is awful, and the offense which was looking GOOD went south. But as a fan of many years visiting the Mullins Center and seeing some great games, and some not so great games, this was a display of a team that exhibited a severe lack of having no heart, having no desire, having no pride, and most of all having no leadership. Any fans attending the game last night to try out Massachusetts Hockey I’m guessing didn’t bother to stay and finish watching this MESS. And I believe this is hurting UMASS Hockey. It’s one thing to lose a game and give a good showing, but to leave an impression on the fans that as a team it appears you the players don’t even care is SAD.
    I don’t know Coach Micheletto, but I’m sure he’s a great guy, but what can he do at this point. He can’t lace them up and get out on the ice. The coach was quoted as saying the following:
    “I know when you get the mirror held up in front of you on a bad day, that it’s not pretty to see that mirror looking back at you,” he said. “When you see that image staring back at you, you’ve either got to make some decisions to change what you see, or continue on down that path.”
    It’s time for this coach to make some changes and take those players who seem to lack will, desire, and pride, and sit them in the seats from now on, and give others a chance to play. If this type of a game is repeated at the Mullins Center any time soon it will damage the college hockey product that presently exists here. What I’m going to say now isn’t to be a knock on Atlantic Hockey either, because they have many teams right now ranked higher than our own Minutemen, and I’ve attended many Atlantic Hockey games and watched them play their hearts out, but maybe UMASS hockey is at a point where if it can’t get the proper funding and backing from its athletic department, maybe they should be moving to Atlantic Hockey where they will be more competitive. I know its early, but it will be shameful to finish this season possibly behind new comer Connecticut. And that’s not a knock on UCONN either who has already showen they’ve come the HE to play.

    Like

    • Thanks for your comment Robert. Some very valid points. I disagree about Atlantic Hockey. Just because this administration doesn’t know how to properly support a Hockey East program doesn’t mean we should give up. It means we should demand a more competent athletic department.

      Like

  3. Robert, several teams are going to finish behind Connecticut. This same soul searching exercise is going on at Northeastern right now. There seems to be a few things most every poster here and at UMass Hoops can agree on: This starts at the top, the top hired this coach after most all said no and this coach is a good guy (Joe Mallen reincarnated)? I don’t need to break each of these down one by one I think we know the problem with all three.

    I feel bad that you too had to sit through that no show effort; you lasted longer than me. The only thing I take issue with is you say sit some players and let guys who want to play get a shot.

    There are none.

    Like

  4. RDW

     /  November 23, 2014

    The only relevant mistake the administration made regarding this game is hiring a below average assistant coach as the head coach. We are stuck with this ham and egger for another year. It is as obvious as the redline is red.

    Like

  5. Jorma K.

     /  November 24, 2014

    I can corroborate FTT’s assessment on those UMass teams in the 90’s. While they clearly lacked the depth through the lines vs. any HE team at that time, they never quit like this UMass team did vs. UVM. They did throw the towel in much too early one year, but the team was a dysfunctional mess (the year Brad Norton left early for the pros, if I recall correctly). That was probably the program’s first year with somewhat-high expectations. In fact, my beef with those teams were how they lost their cool too quickly and/or at the end of games. If fighting was allowed in college hockey, there would’ve been a lot of bench-clearing brawls and donny-brooks in those days. Those teams lost but they didn’t just show up and lose.

    Like

    • I remember a surprising amount of fighting in those games even with it not being allowed in college. Of course big bad Brad Norton had a lot to do with that.

      Like

      • Jorma K.

         /  November 24, 2014

        It sure wasn’t for a lack for trying! LOL If they could, they would’ve… they had a bunch of guys who could throw their body around in those days: Denny Wright, Dean Stork, Tommy O’Connor, just off the top of my head. They may have lost but they never backed down.

        Like

  6. Gary

     /  November 25, 2014

    UMass played a great game for the first 9 minutes or so, but a lack of defense and average-below average goaltending led to a big uvm lead and it was game over.

    As a fan it was tough to watch, but i’ve never left a game early. If as fans we cant support them at their worst, we dont deserve to support them when they’re at their best(which is hopefully coming soon)

    Like

    • Robert Vogel

       /  November 26, 2014

      Nice comment Gary, more power to you for sitting there. However, we’ve supported this team consistently for years. That being said, this doesn’t mean I need to stay in my seat to watch the garbage they put out that night. They didn’t deserve a fan sitting there watching that crap. If they even appeared to have cared we’d of stayed, and the score would have probably been different, BUT, that evening, that was a slap in the face to their fans. And I won’t sit through crap like that from a team that made it very clear that night, that they didn’t care.

      Like

      • Truthfully, I was surprised they didn’t get booed. Im glad they didn’t because I think it’s lame to do to amateur athletes. But I was expecting it.

        Like

  7. RDW

     /  November 25, 2014

    The coach is getting paid to get a solid effort for 60 minutes, not 9 minutes. Inept and in over his head.

    Like

  8. Rocks- glad to have you back! I’ve been a season ticket holder since day 1- I’m disgusted with the state of the program. I feel bad for the kids- they are on a rudderless ship!

    Like

  1. Recruits, Polls, & Awards | Fear The Triangle - UMass Hockey Blog
Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: