Jan. 10, 2010

Courtesy of New Hampshire

DURHAM, N.H. - Two goals from Paul Thompson and Bobby Butler, including a four goal first period sent New Hampshire to a 7-2 win over No. 16 UMass Hockey on Friday night at the Whittemore Center. The Wildcats (9-7-4, 9-2-3 HEA) used two power play goals and a shorthanded tally to overcome the Minutemen. T.J. Syner and Rocco Carzo scored for Massachusetts (11-8-0, 6-6-0 HEA), while Dan Meyers made 26 saves in his first action since November 28. The Mass Attack will head to Boston for a Sunday night matchup with Northeastern from Matthews Arena for an 8 PM faceoff.

With the loss, UMass has not won a game at the Whittemore Center since October 26, 2006, and the Minutemen fall to 2-6-0 in their last eight games. New Hampshire outshot Massachusetts 33-28 for the game, and the Wildcats were 2-for-4 on the power play. The Minutemen were 0-for-4 on the man advantage.

New Hampshire dominated the Minutemen throughout the first period, scoring four goals on 13 shots, including a power play and shorthanded goal. Thompson put the Wildcats on the board during a power play five minutes into the period when he redirected a Blake Kessel shot from the point through Meyers for his ninth goal of the year. Butler extended the lead just 37 seconds later off a rebound from Meyers' pads.

UMass was awarded a power play with four minutes to play in the frame, but that didn't stop the Wildcats from pounding home another goal. Thompson intercepted a pass in the New Hampshire zone, and went in two-on-one with Butler. Butler took a pass form Thompson in the neutral zone, then completed the give-and-go with Thompson with a feed into the slot to Thompson for his second score of the period. The Wildcats made it 4-0 on Kevin McCarey's first career goal with a quick deek that fooled Meyers as McCarey slid it past the UMass netminder.

Syner put Massachusetts on the scoreboard in the opening minute of the second period, but two Wildcat goals quickly ended any momentum the Minutemen had gained. Kessel rocketed a shot off the post that ricocheted out towards the neutral zone, where Syner battled with a UNH defender for puck control. Syner used his skate to move the puck onto his stick for a breakaway, and roofed a shot over Foster's right shoulder for his sixth goal of the season, and fourth in his last five games.

The Wildcats responded with a goal from Butler three minutes after the UMass goal when he hopped off the bench and streaked into the slot, taking a pass from Peter LeBlanc and blasting a low shot under Meyers to make it 5-1 New Hampshire. Kessel notched his sixth goal of the season with four minutes to play in the period when he rocketed a shot from the point that slammed off the post and in for New Hampshire's second power play marker of the night.

The teams played an even third period, with shots 8-7 in favor of the Minutemen. Carzo got his first goal in seven games when he banged home a rebound off a Casey Wellman shot. With Meyers pulled during a delayed penalty on UNH, Wellman fired a low shot that redirected off the endboards and onto the stick of Carzo for the score. Steve Moses closed out the scoring 17 seconds following the Carzo goal with a shot that rattled off a couple posts and over the goal line.