Scrolling Headlines:

Former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous gives talk at UMass -

February 25, 2017

Anti-racism workshop teaches tactics to fight oppression in community -

February 25, 2017

Providence power play haunts UMass hockey in 6-2 loss -

February 25, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 10 Providence on Senior Night at the Mullins center -

February 25, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falters in the second half, falling to George Washington 83-67 Thursday -

February 24, 2017

UPDATE: SGA announces second and third artist for ‘Mullins Live!’ -

February 23, 2017

Divest UMass and STPEC host panel on building ‘solidarity economies’ in the Trump era -

February 23, 2017

UMass women’s basketball losing streak extends to 10 games after loss to URI -

February 23, 2017

Sixth annual Advocacy Day set to take place March 1 -

February 23, 2017

Panel discusses racial, sexual and psychological violence in response to art exhibit -

February 23, 2017

Judy Dixon enters final season with UMass tennis with simple message: One match at a time -

February 23, 2017

UMass baseball enduring early-season limitation in playing in New England -

February 23, 2017

Minutewomen softball begins season with cross-country travel, string of tournaments -

February 23, 2017

UMass baseball looks to bounce back from disappointing 2016 season -

February 23, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse senior Hannah Murphy is Angela McMahon’s latest legend in the making -

February 23, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse senior defenders accept leadership roles in quest for ninth consecutive Atlantic 10 Championship -

February 23, 2017

Kelsey McGovern rejoins UMass women’s lacrosse as an assistant coach after starring for Minutewomen -

February 23, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse looks to continue improving throughout 2017 season -

February 23, 2017

Spring Sports Special Issue 2017 -

February 23, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse defense relying on senior leadership with new faces in starting lineup -

February 23, 2017

UMass men’s soccer preps for weekend tournament

The Massachusetts men’s soccer team will play in Vermont’s Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Windjammer Classic this weekend hoping to build upon a pair of strong defensive showings  in its opening weekend.

UMass (0-1-1) allowed only a single goal in two showings against Evansville and Bradley, coming to a scoreless draw against Evansville and losing to Bradley, 1-0, in consecutive overtime battles.

Now, the Minutemen look to make greater strides against both New Hampshire (1-1) and Vermont (1-0-1) in what UMass coach Sam Koch described as a “huge weekend.”

Koch acknowledged the challenge both teams posed for his young squad while particularly highlighting UNH, which defeated Evansville in the same tournament a week ago.

“New Hampshire I think is one of the better New Hampshire teams I’ve seen in a long time,” Koch said. “They work off the ball very well, they have a good understanding with each other and they have three, I think, very good players.”

Koch hinted that UNH may provide his team with a good sense of where it progressed early in the season.

“I think it’s going to be a great game, a great test for us,” he said. “We have our work cut out for us no doubt. New Hampshire is the game we have to worry about right now.”

If UMass is going to beat the Wildcats, it’ll have to slow down their potent attack. Fortunately for the Minutemen, goalkeeper Nick Ruiz was on top of his game in the opening week, allowing just one goal in two contests.
Josh Schwartz, the Minutemen’s leading point scorer from a year ago, was impressed by Ruiz’s importance.

“He played great, really well,” Schwartz said. “(Ruiz) has been great, big time saves.”

Koch expanded on Schwartz’s sentiments.

“You couldn’t ask for a better start. Obviously we were snake bit a little bit. We gotta get him to be able to talk to the snakes better so we can get some goals for him and he won’t get bitten,” Koch added in a humorous moment referencing the team’s lack of early goal scoring.

While Koch made light of the current situation, there’s a sense the offense needs to capitalize on more opportunities going forward.

“Bottom line is you gotta put your chances away to win games and we haven’t done it,” Koch said. “Is it a concern? It’s a concern. Is it a major concern? Not right now. The whole emphasis right now is making sure we defend well and I think we showed this weekend we can do that.”

Schwartz brushed off any ideas that the offense was an issue despite UMass being outshot 41-19 through two games.

“Not so much, we’re getting used to each other,” he said. “We were defending a lot, we were really tired after the first game. In all honesty, the first game we should’ve won I think, we had some chances in the second half and the overtime but I think we’re gonna keep progressing. I’m not too concerned right now.”

The Minutemen will take on New Hampshire on Friday at 1:30 p.m.

Mark Chiarelli can be reached at mchiarel@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @Mark_Chiarelli.

 

 

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