No. 5 Men’s Hockey Blanks UMass-Lowell, 3-0
LOWELL, Mass. – Trevor van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) notched a goal and an assist, while sophomore netminder Casey DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.) stopped all 23 shots he faced for his third-straight shutout to lift the fifth-ranked University of New Hampshire men's hockey team to a 3-0 win against Hockey East foe the University of Massachusetts-Lowell at Tsongas Center.
UNH, which has now won three straight, improves to 7-1-1 overall with a 5-1-1 mark in Hockey East play. UMass-Lowell is 2-5-1, 1-4-1 in HEA.
DeSmith has a streak of 178:52 of scoreless hockey. The team's longest stretch of scoreless hockey was a 181:31 mark in the 1968-69 season (a program-record mark). It also marks the first time since the 1928-29 season that UNH posted three consecutive shutouts. He now has five career shutouts, including four this season. He had 11 of his 23 saves in the third period.
With UNH clinging to a 1-0 lead midway through the third period, Downing collected a pass from van Riemsdyk at the defensive blueline. He carried the puck through neutral ice and into the offensive zone scoring on a nifty backhander that rang in off the high short-side pipe to make it 2-0. Block scored his league-leader eighth goal of the season on the power play with 20 seconds remaining in the contest to seal the 3-0 win. The Wildcats have a power play goal in all seven wins this season. UML held an 11-8 shot advantage for the period.
New Hampshire kept up the pressure in the second period with quality chances by Kevin Goumas (Long Beach, N.Y.) at the five-minute mark of the period and another by Downing from the center slot at the midway point of the frame. However, it was van Riemsdyk finally breaking the scoreless deadlock at 15:53. UML was skating with an injured player in the d-zone and UNH controlled the puck for an extended rush. It was Goumas intercepting a River Hawk clearing attempt and finding van Riemsdyk, who did the rest for his fourth goal of the season to make it 1-0. UNH held a 14-7 shot advantage in the period.
In a scoreless first period, UNH had the better of pressure for most of the period. The Wildcats held an 11-5 shot advantage in the period with several quality chances.
New Hampshire held a 33-23 shot edge for the game.
DeSmith improves to 7-1-1 on the season, while his counterpart Doug Carr stopped 30 shots including 13 in the second period. He moves to 2-4-1.
UNH was 1-4 on the power play, while the River Hawks were 0-1 on their extra-skater opportunities.
The Wildcats return to action Sunday, Nov. 18 when they travel to No. 11 Boston University. Puck drop is 1 p.m. at Agganis Arena. UNH's next home game is Nov. 30 against the River Hawks. Puck drops at 7:30 p.m. at the Whittemore Center with TV coverage on WBIN-TV and FOX College Sports. For tickets, visit www.unhwildcats.com or call (603) 862-4000, extension 5.