Friday, January 9, 2009
MASSACHUSETTS TIES UP NEW HAMPSHIRE, 2-2
UMass' Cory Quirk ties game at 19:56 of the third period
AMHERST, Mass. - Cory Quirk's goal with 4.3 seconds remaining in regulation was enough to give UMass a 2-2 tie with No. 13 New Hampshire on Friday night at the Mullins Center. T.J. Syner also scored for the Minutemen, with Dan Meyers making 29 saves in goal for the home team. Brian Foster got the start in goal for the Wildcats (9-6-3, 6-4-3 HEA), making 31 saves. The teams will square off again on Saturday at the Whittemore Center. The puck is scheduled to drop at 7 PM.
The Minutemen (9-8-3; 5-4-3 HEA) outshot New Hampshire 33-31 for the game, holding a 3-0 edge in overtime. Neither team had much success on the power play, with UMass going 0-7 and the Wildcats going 0-5.
Both teams had their chances to take an early lead, but Meyers and Foster were able to steer away all the shots during the first period. The Minutemen had better quality scoring chances during the opening stanza, throwing 12 shots on goal, but they were not able to sneak the puck past the goal line. UMass had three power plays during the period, putting two shots on goal during the man advantage. Although the Wildcats had 10 shots on goal during the frame, the UMass defense did a good job in keeping the New Hampshire forwards out of the slot.
The scoring picked up during the second period, with New Hampshire taking a 2-1 lead heading into intermission. Eight minutes into the period, Bobby Butler notched his fourth goal of the season on a break away. After UMass had cleared the puck into the neutral zone, Kevin Kapstad collected the puck and lofted it over a UMass defender. Butler caught the puck and skated in alone on Meyers, then ripped a shot past him for the score.
The Minutemen responded two minutes later when Syner tallied his third goal of the season off a feed from Will Ortiz. When Ortiz gathered a loose puck, he dropped a pass to Syner. Syner then took a shot from the top of the right faceoff dot that beat Foster glove side.
The Wildcats retook the lead late in the period when Mike Sislo scored his thirteenth goal of the season right out of the penalty box. After the Wildcats cleared the puck into the neutral zone, Sislo sprinted out of the penalty box and went in on Meyers, beating him low for the goal.
Although New Hampshire outshot the Minutemen 10-7 during the third period, it was UMass that came away with a late goal to send the game into overtime. After UMass pulled Meyers with 44 seconds remaining in regulation, the Minutemen tried to put home the tying goal.
UMass did just that when Alex Berry collected a pass from Chase Langeraap to the left of Foster, Berry a fired a pass through the slot to Quirk who one-timed the puck home for the score. The goal was Quirk's seventh of the season and his 93rd career point.
Both teams had limited chances during the extra frame, but Meyers and Foster were there to preserve the tie.