DURHAM, N.H. — Trailing 1-0 in the second period, the Wildcats scored back-to-back goals 13 seconds apart as the University of New Hampshire men's hockey team defeated No. 2 UMass 3-1 Sunday afternoon at the Whittemore Center. Sophomore Ryan Verrier scored his first career goal to tie up the game and junior Max Gildon recorded the game-winner, while senior captain Anthony Wyse added an empty net goal. Junior Mike Robinson had an outstanding performance with 27 saves.
SHINING BRIGHT: 3 stars of the week
The Wildcats held UMass to just one goal, despite the Minutemen averaging 4.43 goals per game this season, which ranks third nationally. With the win, the Wildcats improve to 5-2-1 overall (3-1-0 Hockey East), while UMass is now 6-2-0 (2-2-0 Hockey East).
The Wildcats will travel to Orono on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 15-16, to take on Maine as part of the Border Battle. Friday's game is at 7:30 p.m. ET, while Saturday's contest will be on NESNplus at 7 p.m.
How it happened
- At 14:06 of the first period, Robinson made a clutch save to keep the score at 0-0. Oliver Chau stole the puck and attacked the goal, sending a pass across the slot to Ty Farmer for a low shot, but Robinson covered the net to make the save.
- UNH outshot UMass 14-7 in the first period. The Wildcats went 0-3 on the power play, while the Minutemen went 0-1.
- UMass was first on the board with a goal from Mitchell Chaffee 3:01 into the second period. John Leonard passed the puck up the boards to Chaffee, who sent it out to Zac Jones at the blue line. Jones took a shot that tipped off Chaffee's stick in the slot and went into the upper glove-side of the net.
- The Wildcats tied the game up at 8:16 of the second period off a goal by Verrier. Sophomore Angus Crookshank (North Vancouver, British Columbia) passed to sophomore Jackson Pierson (Zionsville, Ind.) behind the net who knocked it out to Verrier for a shot that was touched by a UMass player and went over the shoulder of Filip Lindberg.
- Just 13 seconds later, UNH took the lead during the team's fifth power play of the game. Junior Patrick Grasso (Ankeny, Iowa) gathered the puck off the faceoff and sent it back to Gildon just inside the blue line who ripped a shot that hit the glove-side post and went into the back of the net. Pierson had the second assist.
- UMass earned a power play at 15:41 in the third. Chaffee ripped a shot across the slot that ricocheted off the left post as UNH killed the penalty.
- With 28.1 seconds left in the game, the Wildcats clinched their victory with an empty net goal by Wyse for a final score of 3-1
Inside the numbers
- UNH outshot UMass by a 29-28 margin.
- Robinson made 27 saves, while Lindberg recorded 26.
- The Wildcats went 1-for-6 on the power play and the Minutemen went 1-for-3.
Beyond the box score
- The last time UNH defeated a No. 2 team was in the Whittemore Center on February 14, 2015, topping Boston University 4-3.
- Verrier's goal was the first of his career.
- UNH is 2-0-0 against nationally ranked teams this season, as the Wildcats also defeated No. 15 Boston College, 1-0, on Nov. 1.
- Gildon has recorded a point in seven of the eight games UNH has played this season, having four goals and eight assists for 12 points.
- Pierson has six assists over the last two games.