Scrolling Headlines:

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

UMass woman’s basketball ends FIU Holiday Classic with 65-47 loss to Drexel -

December 29, 2016

Irwin scoring, Marcou honored

The power play unit of the Massachusetts hockey team dominated in the win over Rensselaer last Thursday, scoring four of its five goals on the man advantage.

Both of defenseman Matt Irwin’s goals came on power plays in the third period, as the Minutemen defeated the Engineers, 5-2 in its first game of the 2009 season. The high-intensity game saw 24 penalties issued between both teams, 14 by RPI, as officials issued four penalties for hitting after the whistle and two for roughing.

Last season, UMass (1-0) scored roughly 25 percent (31) of its goals on the man advantage, and had a .170 conversion percentage.

Irwin believes that the Minutemen won’t see games with as many penalties as they saw against the Engineers as the season goes on, but that doesn’t mean that UMass can take early-season games lightly.

“We started off slow in the first period, 0-for-4 [in power play opportunities] but in the second and third periods we picked it up. When you get a chance like that, especially in five-on-three’s and four on three’s, you have to make something happen, and fortunately we did that,” Irwin said.

In terms of UMass’ upcoming game against No. 2 Boston University on Friday, Irwin knows that the Terriers return younger members of the front-line unit that led the conference in scoring last season, and pose a threat offensively in 2009.

He knows the caliber team that UMass faces, and judges goals on effectiveness, not style points.

“They don’t have to be pretty, they all count,” Irwin said. “We have to put shots to the net, and hopefully get a rebound and get an ugly goal.”

Marcou recognized

Junior James Marcou earned Hockey East Performer of the Week honors for his career-high-tying four assists against RPI Thursday, as the All-American winger helped on four of the five goals scored by the Minutemen on the night. At least for one night, Marcou helped Irwin become the then-leading scorer (two goals) in the nation, and also aided freshman Rocco Carzo in attaining his first goal of his collegiate career.

This is not the first time Marcou has earned the Hockey East Conference distinction. Last season, he received the award during the week of Nov. 3 and Feb. 23. During those weeks, Marcou tallied three goals, five assists and one goal, four assists, respectively. Marcou facilitated Chase Langeraap’s game-tying goal to send a game against Maine into overtime, where Brian Keane would score the winning goal for the Minutemen, 11 seconds into sudden death.

Marcou is a player who makes his teammates better while sharpening his own skills as well.

“I don’t think James tailors his game around any other player,” UMass coach Don Cahoon said. “I think he just has a [skill set] in himself, and it’s just an incredible amount of hockey sense and savvy. He makes other people better by getting people pucks at opportune times on a regular basis.”

Marcou had seven multi-assist games last season, and compiled five multi-game assist streaks, including a six-game span between Jan. 10-Jan. 30, when he tallied 10 assists.

Hockey East Play Begins

Unlike many collegiate sports, hockey injects conference play almost immediately into team schedules.

The Minutemen face the first of three October Hockey East opponents Friday in the Terriers. The game serves as the defending national champion Terriers’ season opener, as UMass eagerly anticipates the matchup. The Minutemen defeated 2007 national champion and Hockey East foe Boston College in their first meeting last season, and look to deny any momentum of yet another defending champion.

“Regardless of what this game means,” said Cahoon, “the two points count.”         

Mike Gillmeister can be reached at

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