August 30, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

Suspect in custody after break-ins on Lincoln Avenue -

Thursday, August 28, 2014

UMass crime alerts reveal reports of lewd acts -

Friday, August 22, 2014

UMass women’s soccer hopes added depth brings more consistency in 2014 -

Friday, August 22, 2014

UMass mourns death of alumnus and journalist James Foley -

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Kassan Messiah, Trey Seals to shoulder pass rushing responsibility for UMass football -

Thursday, August 21, 2014

UMass names Blake Frohnapfel as the starting quarterback -

Monday, August 18, 2014

Decision looms for Mark Whipple as UMass football looks to name starting quarterback -

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Former UMass star Marcel Shipp overseeing a strong running back competition -

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Former UMass basketball star Chaz Williams signs professional contract in Turkey, still eyeing NBA career -

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Minutemen anxious to display aggressive defense -

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

UMass football turns the page, excited for 2014 season -

Monday, August 4, 2014

UMass student struck and killed by vehicle Thursday night -

Friday, August 1, 2014

UMass receives anonymous $10.3 million gift -

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

UMass football summer coverage 2014 -

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Chiarelli: Sam Koch’s impact evident in those who knew him best -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Longtime UMass men’s soccer coach Sam Koch dies after two-year battle with sinus cancer -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Southwest evacuated after gas leak -

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

UMass Rowing finishes NCAA Championships, ends year ranked No. 21 in the nation -

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Two UMass basketball alums to compete for a lofty prize in The Basketball Tournament -

Friday, May 23, 2014

Commencement Photos 2014 -

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Minutemen hope to avoid late game, late season falloffs

The “Cahoon Swoon,” as it’s been called by students, is a tendency for the Massachusetts hockey team to fade in the second half of the season after a quality start to the year.

For whatever reason, the Minutemen have a history of starting the season off quickly and efficiently, then losing winnable games later on in the year and dropping in the rankings.

Unfortunately for UMass, it has also applied to individual games from time-to-time.

Keeping a lead hasn’t been the Minutemen’s strongest suit in the past few years. When the team does score late in a match or hold a lead they’ve had throughout the game, it’s been more of the exception than the norm.

Last January, in a game against New Hampshire, UMass had fought its way to a tie but ultimately fell, 3-1, after giving up two goals in 45 seconds at the end of the third period.

That game, for some students, was just another example of the “Cahoon Swoon” taking its usual effect on the team in the second half of the season.

UMass coach Don Cahoon says that he believes this year is different. This season, the team is, “a year older, and a year wiser,” and knows how to live in the moment of each game and focus on the task at hand rather than the outcome.

“Last year, you could feel the tide swinging late in games because the team was so young and they were kind of paralyzed by the thought of the outcome instead of taking care of the process,” said Cahoon. “This year, we’ve got an understanding of what the process is, and we’ve handled that pressure fine.”

The team is aware of this recent trend, but tries instead to think about keeping the same mentality throughout the game’s entirety, rather than thinking about the outcome.

“I think it’s hard to keep a lead whenever [you have it],” said Pereira. “It’s just our mentality that has to stay where it is. We can’t change our game and we have to keep going and I think we learned that against Bentley and we didn’t pick it up against Providence.”

“Against Bentley, we really took it to them for every period and obviously we came out with a win,” he said.

Already this season, UMass had a lead with under a minute left in regulation and coughed it up just before the end of the period. Against Northeastern, the squad held a 3-2 advantage but allowed a goal with just two seconds left to play.

“Northeastern was a situation that was totally different than last year,” said Cahoon. “We had possession of the puck and all we had to do was clear the zone.  It was one player having a fluke play in the course of the game.”

His players agree, saying that the goal wasn’t one that came from lack of preparation or intensity, but was simply a stroke of bad luck.

“Northeastern just got a lucky bounce,” said Pereira. “We were about to get the puck out of the zone and it got crashed to the net. It’s unfortunate, but that wasn’t a mentality issue. We just have to bear down and just make sure we protect in that part of the game.”

“I don’t think anybody was expecting that we would lose that game,” added Cahoon.

The Minutemen are 1-1-1 overall and 0-1-1 in Hockey East thus far. While it’s definitely too early to draw any conclusions about the squad, UMass will certainly have to avoid its typical second half collapse and learn how to play with a lead if it has any hopes of advancing deep into conference playoffs.

Michael Wood can be reached at mcwood@student.umass.edu.

 

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