BURLINGTON, Vt. - Matt White and H.T. Lenz each tallied goals and Brody Hoffman picked up his first career shutout as Vermont blanked Providence 2-0 on Saturday night at Gutterson Fieldhouse to pick up its first win of the season. The Catamounts improve to 1-2-2 (1-2-2 HEA), while the Friars fall to 4-3-1 (3-2-0 HEA).
Vermont finished the night 5-5 on the penalty kill to finish the weekend a perfect 9-9 as it blocked a total of 18 Friar shots. Hoffman stopped 24 shots for his first career win, including 17 saves in the third period, while Providence goalie Jon Gillies collected 19 saves in a losing effort.
"I give our guys all the credit in the world, we had a great performance from our team tonight," said head coach Kevin Sneddon. "One of the keys to the game was our penalty kill, (assistant coach) Kevin Patrick has done a fantastic job. That was really one of the big stories of the weekend, killing two 5-on-3's and just being solid all weekend on the kill."
"We paid a price tonight and we did all the little things that bring us success," Sneddon added. "I'm just happy for them that they can taste it, they've worked hard and haven't had a lot to show for it. It's nice for them to taste some success."
White opened the scoring for Vermont midway through the first period. The junior took a feed from Pete Massar down the right wing boards and cut into the high slot. White fired a slap shot that trickled through the pads of Gillies to give the Catamounts a 1-0 advantage. Michael Paliotta picked up the second assist on the play.
Early in the second period, Vermont doubled its lead as Lenz curled out of the left corner after receiving a pass from Jacob Fallon. Lenz whipped a weak angle shot toward the near post and it found a way through Gillies' five hole into the back of the net. Chris McCarthy grabbed the second assist for his third helper of the weekend.
From there, the UVM penalty kill took over in the second frame. Vermont killed off four Providence power plays in the period, including a 5-on-3 for 18 seconds at the halfway point of the game. The Friars managed just one shot on goal during the four opportunities, as the Cats limited Providence to only seven shots on goal in the first 40 minutes.
The Catamounts buckled down in the third period to secure the win. Providence pulled Gillies with just over a minute left for the extra attacker and called its timeout with 1:10 remaining. Off the ensuing faceoff, Vermont kept the Friars to the outside and blocked several shots in the final minute to preserve the shutout.
The Catamounts look to build off the victory next Saturday (Nov. 10) as they travel to the Whittemore Center to take on No. 10 New Hampshire at 7 p.m. in a Hockey East contest. All the action can be heard live on WVMT 620-AM and online at SportsJuice.com. Alastair Ingram calls the action with pre-game coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m.
NOTES: Saturday night marked the 50th all-time meeting between Vermont and Providence ... Nick Bruneteau skated in his 75th career game against the Friars, while Matt White played in his 70th career contest ... Freshman forward Ryan Rosenthal made his Catamount debut on Saturday ... Vermont entered the contest ranked 11th in the nation on the power play at 23.5-percent ... UVM has had 10 different scorers on its 10 goals this season ... The Cats had nine different players block at least one shot on Saturday.