Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Providence gaining ground on New Hampshire

By Ryan Fleming, Collegian Staff

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Providence picked a great time to keep its impressive streak, earning an all-important three points on first-place New Hampshire (16-7-1, 12-4-1 Hockey East) and second-place Boston College, with a victory over the Eagles and a tie against Merrimack this past weekend.

Friday night, No. 13 Providence (12-9-3, 9-5-3 Hockey East) held on to beat No. 9 BC (12-6-7, 8-4-6 Hockey East) at the Conte Forum, 3-2. At 5:44 into the game, John Rheault of Providence beat Eagles goalie John Muse to put the Friars up 1-0.

The Friars continued to ride the momentum scoring again in a little over two minutes. Greg Collins, who also assisted on Providence’s first goal, put his team in a seemingly comfortable position over the Eagles, 2-0.

The second period was another story. The Eagles came pouncing back, scoring in both ends of the period. Kyle Kucharski and Matt Greene of BC put them back into the game at 3:35 and 16:38, respectively.

With the game still tied with less than five minutes left, Matt Taormina put the Friars up for good, beating Muse with only 4:27 left in the third period.

At Saturday’s game, the Friars were able to outshoot Merrimack 51-18 and get the lone goal they needed to salvage one crucial point. Kyle MacKinnon was the only Friar to beat Andrew Brathwaite, who stopped an impressive 50-shot barrage by the Friars. Francois Ouimet scored the single goal for the Warriors. It was his seventh of the season.

Catamounts pounce on River Hawks

Vermont goaltender Joe Fallon came up big when his team needed him the most. The Catamount goalie saved 31 shots including 14 in the second period and eight in the third. Fallon improved his record to 5-8-5.

Vermont got out to a 2-0 advantage five minutes into the second. Early in the first period, Reese Wisnowski scored his first of the year to give the Catamounts the early momentum. In the second period, the momentum was still with Vermont when Peter Lenes capitalized with his seventh goal of the year at 5:03 to put the Catamounts up, 2-0.

With his team on the power play and trailing, 2-0, Ben Holmstrom gave UMass Lowell a fighting chance. With 1:07 left in his team’s power play, Holmstrom forced Fallon into his only mistake – scoring his third of the year and putting the River Hawks within one.

Whatever surge the River Hawks thought they had was soon taken away minutes after their lone goal of the period. Viktor Stolberg scored the game-winner, his fifth of the year at 12:34 in the second.

The River Hawks added one more goal halfway through the third from Kory Falite, his eleventh of the year, to put the River Hawks back within one. But with help from goaltender Joe Fallon, the Catamounts fought off the last minute with an extra attacker from the River Hawks to improve their record to 7-10-7 overall and 6-6-5 in Hockey East. UMass Lowell sunk to 12-9-4 and 7-7-4 in Hockey East.

Hockey players honored

The week’s outstanding performers were honored with Hockey East’s weekly awards.

Matt Taormina of Providence was awarded this week’s CCM/RBK Player of the Week award. Taormina scored the game-winner in Providence’s Friday contest with the Boston College Eagles with 4:27 left in the third. He also assisted on the single Providence goal against Merrimack on Saturday night.

James Marcou of Massachusetts earned the Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week award. He matched his career-high with three points in Saturday night’s win over Maine (one goal, two assists). He also helped in setting up the game-winning goal by Chase Langeraap.

Merrimack goaltender Andrew Brathwaite received the Defensive Player of the Week honor. Brathwaite stopped 50 shots against Providence in Saturday night’s 1-1 tie. Over the two Merrimack games this weekend, Brathwaite amassed a total of 78 saves.

Quick notes

Maine goaltender Ben Bishop stopped a career-high 49 shots at UMass Saturday night. Bishop has 2,115 career saves, which places him in third on Maine’s all-time career saves list

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