Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass hockey drops second of the year in 3-1 loss to Ohio State

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     Caroline O’Connor/Daily Collegian

The Massachusetts hockey team jumped out to an early lead on Friday, but couldn’t come from behind as it lost to Ohio State 3-1 at the Mullins Center.

A goal from Niko Hildenbrand put UMass ahead just ten minutes into the first period, but that was all the offense it would get as the Buckeyes (2-1-2, 1-1-0-0 Big Ten) went on to score three unanswered goals.

Coming off last weekend’s pair of victories, the Minutemen (3-2-0) entered Friday’s contest with a great amount of anticipation, but ultimately fell short to an experienced OSU team.

UMass freshman goaltender, Matt Murray, stopped 21 shots on the night but in the end, his efforts weren’t enough. Buckeyes’ captain and leading scorer, Mason Jobst, put the final two tallies behind Murray which sealed the deal.

The Minutemen power play had a rough outing going a dismal 0-5 in the contest.

According to UMass coach Greg Carvel, the team did what it needed to do when play was even on the ice, but couldn’t get things going with the advantage.

“Five-on-five I thought we were pretty good tonight. I think we lost that game the way a young team loses that game,” he said. “[OSU’s] a good, skilled team and executed very well.

“[OSU] knows what they are and they know what it takes to win games,” Carvel added. “We don’t know yet, we’re starting to figure it out, but the power play was a huge factor tonight.”

Hildenbrand’s lone goal, his second of the season, came at 10:01 of the first period. Austin Albrecht and George Mika were credited with the assists.

After the Minutemen drew first blood, the Buckeyes put one home a little over five minutes later, knotting the score at 1-1. Matt Miller was credited with the goal which came on a slap shot off a faceoff win in the offensive zone.

The goal came almost immediately after UMass had been on the power play and couldn’t muster any decent scoring chances.

“We get kicked out of a faceoff, which is frustrating because we watched on tape and our winger’s not really over the line, and we lose our centerman so they win the draw clean and score a nice one-time goal from the point,” Carvel said about Ohio State’s first goal.

OSU doubled its lead midway through the second on a 5-on-3 opportunity that arose from a hooking call from freshman defenseman Cale Makar, followed by a hit-from-behind minor penalty assessed to redshirt sophomore defenseman Josh Couturier 12 seconds later.

With the two-man advantage, the Buckeyes put a flurry of shots on Murray before Jobst slammed home a rebound shot into the open net.

Down just one with plenty of time to play, hope wasn’t lost for the Minutemen heading into the third period. OSU’s third goal on the night however, just four minutes, seven seconds in, provided all the insurance that it would need to get a win.

Jobst was credited with his fourth goal of the season, which leads OSU.

Makar’s hooking call that led to the Buckeyes’ second goal of the night wasn’t his only penalty, as No. 16 was also penalized for holding in the third period.

“Makar wants to do a lot,” said Carvel. “He wants to be a big factor in the game which is fine with me. We’re just asking him to choose his spots a little more carefully, but he’s just a fierce competitor. I’m not concerned, he’ll be fine.”

The Minutemen will be back in action Saturday night when it hosts the Buckeyes for the second night of a back-to-back.

Puck drop is set for 8 p.m.

Liam Flaherty can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @_LiamFlaherty.

 

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