The University of Maine men’s ice hockey team earned a tie in Game 1 against the University of Massachusetts Minutemen before falling in Game 2 at the Mullins Center in Amherst, Mass. by a score of 2-1.
UMaine now sits at 3-3-1 overall and 0-1-1 in Hockey East play, while UMass improves to 3-4-1, 1-1-1 against conference opponents.
The Black Bears return to Alfond Arena for a two-game series against the University of Vermont Catamounts Nov. 8-9 at 7 p.m.
UMass begins a home-and-home series against the University of New Hampshire the same day, with puck drop scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
UMaine skates to 1-1 draw with Minutemen
Two second period goals were all these two teams could muster against each other Friday night to finish Game 1 with a 1-1 tie.
Both squads had quality scoring chances for the remainder of the contest after UMaine sophomore defenseman Ben Hutton and UMass senior forward Connor Sheary matched each other with a goal apiece in the middle stanza.
Black Bears senior netminder Martin Ouellette stuffed a breakaway attempt by UMass senior forward Michael Pereira with just over eight minutes remaining in regulation and UMaine’s would-be go-ahead goal with 45 seconds remaining was called back due to goaltender interference to keep the score knotted at 1-1 heading into extra time.
Ouellette made 31 stops in net for the Black Bears, while junior goaltender Steve Mastalerz kept pace with his old junior hockey running mate with 26 saves of his own for the Minutemen.
Hutton broke the tie just under four minutes into the second frame on the power play after a scoreless opening period. Junior forward Connor Leen fed sophomore forward Devin Shore up ice, who was able to tap the puck over to a streaking Hutton before being taken out by a UMass defender. Hutton beat Mastalerz for his second goal of the season that put the Black Bears up 1-0.
Sheary’s equalizer came with just over two minutes remaining in the period on a wrist shot from inside the left faceoff dot. The senior’s second goal of the year extends his point streak to four games. Sophomore forward Ben Gallacher collected an assist for the second straight game on the play, while freshman defenseman Mark Hetnik earned his first collegiate point with the secondary assist.
The Minutemen held a 4-1 edge in shots in the overtime period and finished with a 32-27 edge in shots overall.
The Black Bears went 1-5 on the power play and held UMass scoreless in their four chances with the extra skater, the first time the Minutemen have been held without a power play goal this season.
Mastalerz propels UMass to 2-1 win
The Minutemen used 38 saves from Mastalerz and two second-period goals 17 seconds apart to earn their first Hockey East win of the season by a 2-1 margin in Game 2 against the Black Bears Saturday night.
UMass freshman forward Ray Pigozzi earned the eventual game-winner midway through the second period after Pereira put the Minutemen up by one 17 seconds earlier.
Shore found the twine on the power play just over six minutes into the final frame to cut the deficit to one, but UMaine could not beat Mastalerz in the final minutes despite heavy pressure for the remainder of the period.
Eleven of Mastalerz’s 38 stops came in the third period on Saturday. Ouellette made 24 saves of his own to keep the Black Bears in it. Both netminders are now 3-3-1 on the young season.
Pereira netted his third goal of the season on the power play, UMass’ 13th of the year, to break the scoreless tie midway through the middle period. Sheary extended his point streak to five games with an assist on the play after he fed senior forward Branden Gracel who relayed the puck over to Pereira at the far post for a one-timer that found the back of the net.
Pigozzi’s game-winner came on a deflection with just over 11 minutes remaining in the period after senior defenseman Colin Shea wired a slap shot from the point.
Shore’s first goal of the season came on a 5-on-3 opportunity in the final period on a slap shot through traffic. The Black Bears finished 1-7 on the man advantage while the Minutemen went 1-3.
UMaine held a 39-26 shot advantage in Game 2.