Connor Hellebuyck nearly gets shut out but Mass.-Lowell still advances
WORCESTER, Mass. -- Connor Hellebuyck made 35 saves and Joe Pendenza scored a short-handed goal in the first period in Massachusetts-Lowell's 2-1 victory against Minnesota State-Mankato on Saturday night in the NCAA Northeast Regional semifinals.
UMass-Lowell (26-10-4) will face top-seeded Boston College on Sunday for a spot in the Frozen Four. The Eagles beat Denver 6-2 in the first semifinal.
The River Hawks, who reached the Frozen Four last season, ended Minnesota State's 13-game unbeaten streak (12-0-1) and kept the Mavericks (26-14-1) from earning their first NCAA Division I tournament win on their third try
Hellebuyck came within 10.8 seconds of his seventh shutout of the season. After defenseman Zack Kamrass scored an empty-net goal to make it 2-0 with 40.9 seconds left, Zach Stepan scored on a power play.
Cole Huggins made 33 saves for the Mavericks.
UMass-Lowell won the Hockey East tournament, and Minnesota State was the WCHA champion.