LOWELL, Mass. -- Sophomore defenseman Seth Barton (Kelowna, B.C.) notched three assists and Tyler Wall (Leamington, Ont.) amassed 35 saves for the No. 13 ranked UMass Lowell Hockey team in the 6-4 win against Merrimack in Hockey East play on Saturday night at the Tsongas Center.
The River Hawks improve to 13-6-4 overall (7-3-3 HEA) with the victory, while Merrimack falls to 5-16-2 overall (3-8-2 HEA). UMass Lowell Head Coach Norm Bazin earned his 200th career coaching win at UMass Lowell with the victory.
"It was a strange, it leaves you with a little bitter taste in your mouth, because I thought we had control and obviously then penalties start," said Bazin. "Tonight there were some positives, you scored on your first two power plays, six different goal scorers. I like the fact that Tyler Wall was spectacular, he had to be, so there was a lot of those positives early on."
The Warriors scored three goals to finish the game, which all came via the power play, which included two 6x4 goals as a result of the Zach Kaiser (Orangeville, Ont.) major penalty with 6:40 to play. Tyler Irvine scored his ninth of the season with 5:59 left and then Tavernier and Chase Gresock both scored extra attacker power play goals with less than four minutes left in regulation to pull within two goals. Gresock finished the night with a game-high eight shots on goal for the Warriors, while Tavernier tallied seven shots on target.
Merrimack finally got on the board in the second period on a goal by Sami Tavernier at 13:02. Freshman forward Andre Lee (Karlstad, Sweden) intercepted a Merrimack pass and scored a nifty goal to make it 4-1 River Hawks just 2:30 into the third frame, while Colin O'Neill (Odenton, Md.) scored less than a minute later to extend the UMass Lowell lead to 5-1. Sophomore forward Austin O'Rourke (Canton, Ga.) scored his first career goal for the River Hawks to make it 6-1 with 10:36 left to play.
Junior forward Charlie Levesque (Russell, Ont.) blasted a shot from the left face-off circle off a pass from sophomore defenseman Jon McDonald (Livonia, Mich.) to make it a 3-0 game for the River Hawks on the power play. Levesque notched another team-best 11 face-offs wins for the River Hawks.
Junior foward Chris Schutz (Keller, Texas) opened the scoring in the game with his fourth of the season just four minutes into the game, while junior foward Connor Sodergren (Tewksbury, Mass.) gave UMass Lowell a 2-0 as he banged home a rebound for his seventh goal of the season less than three minutes later on the power play.
Wall recorded at least 10 saves in every period, including 15 stops in the final frame. Jere Huhtamaa drew the start for Merrimack, stopping eight shots in the first 43:27. Troy Kobryn made one save in the final 11:57 of play in the loss for the Warriors.
The River Hawks return to action on Friday, January 24th at Boston University. Game time from Agganis Arena in Boston is 7:30pm.