UMass hockey cuts goaltender Mac Haight

By Nick Canelas

Nicole Evangelista/Daily Collegian
Nicole Evangelista/Daily Collegian

The Massachusetts hockey team has begun the process of making room for its future.

The Collegian confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that goaltender Mac Haight was cut by the Minutemen on Monday in what appears to be a depth move.

Haight, who spent most of the season as the team’s third-string goalie behind Steve Mastalerz and Alex Wakaluk, appeared in four games for UMass in 2013-14, including a pair of starts against Boston College on Nov. 14 and 15. The freshman made his name known around Amherst with two strong performances against the Eagles – who will appear in the Frozen Four on Thursday – as he made a combined 57 saves and allowed just four goals on consecutive nights while Mastalerz was sidelined with an injury.

Haight finished the season with a 3.43 goals against average and .892 save percentage.

The Sammamish, Wash., native is the second player to leave the program since season’s end after it circulated throughout Twitter a couple weeks ago that Brandon Wahlin is also no longer with the team. The moves are likely to prepare the Minutemen to welcome coach John Micheletto’s second recruiting class this coming season. According to College Hockey News, UMass has 11 recruits, including goalie Henry Dill, committed to the program for next season, six of which have already signed National Letters of Intent.

While Haight finished the season with much better numbers than Wakaluk – the freshman from Alberta, Canada, played in three games, including ugly starts against Maine and New Hampshire, and finished with a 7.38 goals against average and .769 save percentage – it’s pretty clear that Wakaluk – a scholarship player from the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League – is part of the Minutemen’s future plans despite a rocky rookie season.

Richard Murray of The Boston Herald and Hockey’s Future first reported the news via Twitter.

Voity named goalie coach

            In other goaltending news, the Minutemen hired Matt Voity as its next goalie coach.

Voity was the American International College goalie coach for three seasons after multiple stints coaching netminders at the high school level. According to his website, Voity has worked with names such as Cory Schneider, Jon Gillies and a shortlist of other professional players.

UMass fell victim to one of Voity’s products last season when AIC freshman Hunter Leisner made 57 saves in a 3-2 win over the Minutemen on Jan. 14.

Nick Canelas can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @NickCanelas.