By Sarah Moomaw, News Staff
After picking up their first conference win on Friday night in Amherst in 11 games, the men’s hockey team couldn’t complete the home-and-home series sweep of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst tonight as they fell 6-3 at Matthews Arena.
“Obviously not the way we wanted to come out tonight after winning last night,” head coach Jim Madigan said. “We wanted to build on last night’s win. We just didn’t come out playing as hard as I thought we would play to start the game.
The Huskies haven’t won a Hockey East game at home since knocking off Boston College 3-1 on Oct. 13. With the loss they fall to 3-7-1 in the conference (5-8-1 overall).
Northeastern opened the game with a goal at 6:06 from the team’s leading scorer, freshman forward Kevin Roy.
From the right side of the ice, Roy snuck his sixth goal of the year into the back left corner of the net behind sophomore goalie Kevin Boyle, for a 1-0 lead on the power play.
Along with the first goal, came a shower of teddy bears as a holiday toy drive Teddy Bear Toss, where all bears were donated to charity. Fans had been encouraged to bring a new stuffed animal to throw after the Huskies first goal.
At 15:07, senior co-captain Rocco Carzo put the Minutemen on the board off a pass from redshirt-sophomore Steven Guzzo.
With 19.3 seconds left in the opening frame, UMass freshman KJ Tiefenwerth picked up his first collegiate goal, beating senior goalie Chris Rawlings on the left side.
The Huskies tied the game at two with 8:25 remaining in the second period with Roy’s second goal of the night. Freshman forward Mike McMurtry sent the pass across the ice, directly in front of Boyle for Roy to tuck into the back of the net.
Two minutes later, Carzo scored his second goal of the night stuffing the puck past a flattened Rawlings for the game’s fifth goal and gave UMass the lead, 3-2.
At 4:35 in the third period, McMurtry took the puck down the right side of the ice on a break away before shooting directly into Boyle’s pads.
A minute later, UMass junior Adam Phillips made it a two goal game as he knocked in his first goal of the season. After another 86 seconds of play, the game was put out of reach of the Huskies as junior defenseman Joel Hanley took a pass from Tiefenwerth and buried his second goal of the season through traffic.
Adding insult to injury, Northeastern was forced to serve a bench penalty due to an extra teddy bear thrown after senior forward Robbie Vrolyk’s third goal of the season, cutting the lead to two.
“The memo didn’t get to the officials, so when it happened I could see the officials looked surprised,” Madigan said. “I called them over to say that, ‘You look surprised.’ And they weren’t notified. The officials were good, but then said they would have to give me a warning.”
After the Huskies killed the power play, the Minutemen managed to regained the lead at 17:41 with an empty-netter from junior forward Michael Pereira to seal the 6-3 final.
The Huskies won’t return to Matthews until next calendar year, when they take on Bentley University on Jan. 5, 2013. Next Saturday they’ll skate against the University of Massachusetts-Lowell Riverhawks.