NO. ANDOVER, Mass. - Sophomore goaltender Connor Hellebuyck earned his third shutout of the season with 33 saves as UMass Lowell defeated Merrimack, 4-0, to sweep a weekend series on Saturday at Lawler Rink.
Held scoreless for the first time since Nov. 23 at Northeastern, Merrimack strung together 33 shots on net and outshot the River Hawks by nine (33-24), but Hellebuyck - who entered the night as the nation's leader in goals-against average - was brilliant, backstopping the River Hawks to victory by means of his third shutout of the year.
Meanwhile, four different UML skaters lit the lamp, as the visitors carried a one-goal lead into the intermission thanks to a penalty-shot tally by Adam Chapie, scored twice more in the second before adding a late marker in the third to round out the night.
After being hooked from behind at the 11:51 mark of the opening frame, Chapie was awarded a penalty shot and promptly scored to stake the River Hawks a 1-0 lead.
Merrimack was unable to capitalize on three power plays from the end of the first through the midway point of the second; meanwhile, Shayne Thompson lit the lamp for the River Hawks' second goal after hopping out of the penalty box at the conclusion of a Warrior man advantage and made it 2-0 on a mini-breakaway just 40 seconds into the middle stanza.
Later in the second, Chris Maniccia pushed the lead to 3-0 at the 15:18 mark on a wrist shot from the right dot. Merrimack came up empty on two more power-play chances before having to fend off back-to-back penalties midway through the third. The River Hawks finally cashed in on their sixth man advantage of the night, as Evan Campbell found the back of the net from the left circle to account for the last tally of the game.
A Closer Look
- Merrimack won 37-of-70 draws and held advantages in shot attempts in all three periods (8-5, 14-13, 11-6)
- Two different River Hawks - Michael Kapa and Chapie - each finished with multi-point nights
- Senior Mike Collins (Boston, Mass.) led all Warriors with six shots, while Joseph Pendenza put up four shots on target for the River Hawks
Up Next Merrimack will open up a three-game road stretch starting next Friday with a challenging trip to second-ranked Boston College for the lone game of the weekend for the Warriors. Puck drop from Conte Forum on Feb. 7 is set for 7 p.m.