Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass club hockey salvages weekend with tie against NYU on Saturday

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(Jessica Chaiken/Daily Collegian)

(Jessica Chaiken/Daily Collegian)

Trailing 2-1 in the second period after an early off-the-post goal by New York University, Massachusetts club hockey’s Ted Zimmerman took a diving shot that trickled past Violets’ goalie Alec Hardman.

Despite the strong individual effort from Zimmerman and company, the Minutemen never built any momentum off of the impressive goal, finishing Saturday’s matchup with a 3-3 tie.

“It was a great individual effort by Zimmerman, but I think it was a reflection of how we were really taking the momentum away from them in the second half of that period,” UMass associate head coach Joe Smith said.

“That was a huge goal that really gave us a shot in the arm. They sat back a bit after that and we didn’t let up, that’s why we were able to get another goal to take the lead.”

And score again they did.

Tied 2-2, the Minutemen charged Hardman in a 2-on-0 breakaway. A quick pass by Robert Tirea across the crease found the stick of Mark Fidler, who poked the puck in with one minute, 53 seconds left in the second period.

After dominating play throughout the second period, UMass lost control with 6:21 left in the third period, allowing the game-tying goal.

“Unfortunately we had trouble finishing our chances and we made a really costly mistake, or series of them actually, that led to the tying goal,” Smith said.

Tied going into the Minutemen’s second overtime of the season, the five added minutes proved to be unproductive for both teams.

“You can’t turn the puck over and make mental mistakes against good teams and expect to win,” Smith said. “Tying the No. 3 team in the region isn’t anything to hang your head about, but at the same time it was a game we should have won.”

Despite leading in shots 27-24, UMass couldn’t capitalize on its opportunities in front of the net and from shots past the circles in the draw.

Minutemen fall to Huskies

UMass lost its first game of the weekend 2-1 against Northeastern on Friday night at Amelia Park in Westfield in a neutral site home game.

The Huskies opened the second period with the first goal of the game: a shorthanded breakaway after a blocked shot at the point. Northeastern scored again in the third after a second breakaway goal.

The lone Minutemen goal came off of a power-play goal by Zimmerman during the tail end of the third period.

A look ahead

UMass has begun its sprint to the playoffs with a pair of two difficult opponents on the radar. This Friday, the Minutemen are set to play No. 2 Montclair State University.

UMass’ last home game of the season, which is also Senior Night, is this Saturday against Siena.

“We’re in crunch time and we need to find that touch we had at the end of first semester when we were executing much better,” Smith said.

The Minutemen will travel to New Jersey on Friday to face the Red Hawks before returning home Jan. 31 to take on the Saints at 8 p.m.

Ariel Kallenbach can be reached at [email protected]

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