December 20, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

BLOG: UMass football recruiting roundup: UMass signs DT, offers two kickers -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

UMass President Robert Caret resigns to become chancellor of the University of Maryland system -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Brandon Montour: ‘It felt great to be out there’ -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

UMass falls to Northeastern in Brandon Montour’s debut -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Cady Lalanne continues to evolve as a potential outside shooting threat -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

UMass hockey returns to action against Northeastern, Montour to make season debut -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Demetrius Dyson remains hopeful despite rocky start to season -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Former UMass soccer star Matt Keys aims to continue his career professionally -

Monday, December 15, 2014

Pierre-Louis, Dillard shine in UMass victory over Holy Cross -

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Passing, spacing improved in UMass victory -

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Prolific first half propels UMass past Canisius, 75-58 -

Saturday, December 13, 2014

UMass Faculty Senate hears ad hoc committee’s report on FBS football, shoots down contentious motion -

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Minutemen hope improved spacing will aid struggling half court offense -

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Divest UMass urges Board of Trustees to split with fossil fuel industry -

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Cady Lalanne accustomed to dealing with increased attention -

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Front to Back: Week of Dec. 1, 2014 -

Monday, December 8, 2014

Chiarelli: UMass basketball running out of time to find its identity -

Monday, December 8, 2014

Minutewomen take care of business against American -

Monday, December 8, 2014

UMass women’s basketball handles American, 71-61 -

Sunday, December 7, 2014

UMass basketball downed by Florida Gulf Coast 84-75 -

Sunday, December 7, 2014

UMass gives up three straight goals in loss to No. 20 Merrimack

Nathalie Sczublewski/Collegian

The story of the Massachusetts hockey team’s season is one filled with the inability to protect leads and the constant squandering of games in the third period.

That story proved to be true once again in Sunday’s 4-2 loss at No. 20 Merrimack.

The Minutemen (10-13-2, 7-10-1 Hockey East Association) found themselves tied late in the third period to the Warriors (13-10-5, 11-6-2 HEA), but were ultimately done in by the eventual game-winning goal by Josh Myers with 5:47 left in the period.

Myers received a pass from Shawn Bates in stride, then continued to blow by UMass defenseman Darren Rowe and beat goalie Kevin Boyle top-shelf to put Merrimack on top, 3-2. With time still remaining, the Minutemen had a chance to once again draw even with Merrimack, but surrendered an empty-net goal with 46 seconds left to drop the tight contest.

Even though it was a close game throughout the contest, the Warriors were in control for much of the matchup, ending the game with a decisive 41-18 shot advantage over the Minutemen. Boyle finished the game with 37 saves on 40 shots.

Merrimack opened up the scoring late in the first period when Justin Mansfield beat Boyle to put the home side up 1-0. Shortly after the goal, the Minutemen were dealt a major blow when top line defenseman Conor Allen received a five-minute major and a game misconduct for contact to the head, putting UMass down to only five defensemen for the remainder of the game.

But the Minutemen’s aggressive penalty kill shined once again when junior Branden Gracel notched his team-leading 13th goal with 14 seconds left in the period to tie the game at 1-1. The shorthanded goal was the sixth for UMass this season, tying the team for third nationally in that category and its most in a season since 2003.

The Minutemen found themselves in the lead midway through the second period when Eddie Olczyk scored to put UMass ahead 2-1. But the lead lasted a mere 29 seconds as the Warriors answered back the next shift with a goal from Quinn Gould. Despite the tied score, Merrimack owned a commanding 28-8 shot advantage over the Minutemen through two periods.

Despite the loss, UMass continued its superb penalty killing, going 7-for-7 when down a man.

The loss keeps UMass in seventh place in the Hockey East standings, but now sit only one point clear of Vermont for the eighth and final playoff spot.

The Minutemen must now prepare for next weekend’s home-and-home against UMass Lowell. The Riverhawks won the only previous meeting between the two sides back in November, winning 8-2 at the Mullins Center.

Patrick Strohecker can be reached at pstrohec@student.umass.edu and followed on Twitter at @MDC_Strohecker.

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