DURHAM, N.H. – Brian Foster (Pembroke, N.H.) recorded 31 saves, including 17 in the second period, to lift the sixth-ranked University of New Hampshire men’s ice hockey team to Sunday evening’s 2-1 Hockey East victory against fifth-ranked Boston University at the Whittemore Center.
UNH, with its fourth consecutive win in the series vs. the Terriers, improved to 3-0-0 overall and 1-0-0 in Hockey East while BU suffered its first loss of the season and is now 3-1-0, 1-1-0.
Foster made 15 saves in nine shorthanded situations. UNH’s offense was sparked by James van Riemskdyk (Middletown, N.J.), who finished with a goal and an assist, and Kevin Kapstad (Boxboro, Mass.), who tallied two assists.
BU goalie Grant Rollheiser finised with 22 saves.
After going 1-for-5 on the power play in the first period, the Wildcats took a 2-0 lead at 5:32 of the second stanza on van Riemsdyk’s power-play tally. Kapstad made a tape-to-tape pass from his goal line to van Riemsdyk behind the defense at the opposite blue line. van Riemsdyk shifted to the slot and lifted a shot into the net.
UNH spent most of the remainder of the second period shorthanded, as the Wildcats were whistled for six consecutive minor penalties. The Terriers had a 5x3 advantage for 1:27 at 6:52 but generated just one shot. They had another two-skater advantage – this time for 72 seconds – at 12:51 and called time out.
BU pulled within 2-1 at 13:06 with tic-tac-toe passing on that 5x3 power play. From the left circle, Colby Cohen found Colin Wilson at the right doorstep. Wilson quickly moved the puck to the slot, where Jason Lawrence one-timed a shot into the net.
The Terriers continued to pepper Foster, but he stopped all four shots he faced on the remainder of that power play to preserve UNH’s one-goal advantage.
Despite being outshot 25-14 through two periods, the ‘Cats took a 2-1 lead into the start of the third period.
The Wildcats gained a two-skater power play for 54 seconds at 13:15, but Rollheiser stopped all three shots he faced in that time frame to keep the Terriers within one goal.
Rollheiser was pulled in favor of an extra skater with 1:24 to play, then had to re-enter the game five seconds later on a neutral-zone faceoff. He once again went to the bench with 57 seconds remaining.
Kevin Shattenkirk fired a screened shot from the right circle that was turned aside by Foster, and that proved to be the last shot he would face. With 5.5 seconds to play, Wilson won the faceoff back to Jason Lawrence, but his shot from the right point was blocked by the UNH defense. The puck was then cleared from the slot as time expired.
The Wildcats took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission on a power-play goal by Phil DeSimone (East Amherst, N.Y.) at 11:58. With one Terrier already in the penalty box, a second was sent there at 10:47 to give the ‘Cats a two-skater advantage for 1:10. Kapstad initiated the scoring sequence with a pass from the left point across the slot to van Riemsdyk. He quickly moved the puck down low to DeSimone, who jammed the puck in at the right post.
UNH had another two-skater advantage – this time for 1:46 – at 14:46. BU kept the ‘Cats at bay, however, and limited them to just one shot in that span. Immediately after that kill, the Terriers generated a rush in which Colin Wilson’s hard wrist shot from the left circle was snared by Foster’s glove.
New Hampshire generated a 3-on-2 rush with 2:30 remaining in the opening stanza. Thomas Fortney (Webster Grove, Mo.) snapped a pass from the left circle to Steve Moses (Leominster, Mass.), whose redirection from deep in the right circle sailed wide of the near post.
BU went on the power play in the opening minute of the game and sustained heavy pressure on Foster, who had to make four saves on that kill to keep the game scoreless. The Terriers continued to generate pressure, and Foster stoned Joe Pereira’s wraparound bid at the left post in the sixth minute.
UNH, on its first power play of the night, nearly took the lead when Kapstad’s shot from the slot was blocked and trickled just wide of the net, and then Mike Sislo (Superior, Wis.) was denied at the top of the crease.
The Wildcats went 2-for-8 on the power play and 8 of 9 on the penalty kill.
New Hampshire returns to action Oct. 24 at home against the University of Massachusetts. Game time at the Whittemore Center is 7 p.m.