No. 16 Northeastern men’s hockey drops first half of home-and-home against UMass Lowell 4-1

Erin Walsh, news staff

The No. 16 Northeastern men’s hockey team (8-6-2, 8-6-2 HEA) entered Friday’s contest against UMass Lowell looking to keep their two-game winning streak alive. Instead, they allowed the River Hawks to enter Matthews Arena and take home a 4-1 win.

“Our effort wasn’t good enough. Hats off and congratulations to [UMass Lowell] for the win,” Huskies head coach Jim Madigan said. “They were heavier than us, stronger on pucks, wanted it more.” 

Coming off two wins against the University of New Hampshire, the Huskies came out strong against UMass Lowell in the first period. Freshman forward Dylan Jackson opened the scoring with his fourth goal of the season at 1:11 to give NU a 1-0 that would soon slip away. 

“We got off to a good start again and that hasn’t been an issue,” Madigan said. “We had it 1-0 and had a couple of good chances there that maybe could’ve gotten it to [2-0].”

The River Hawks came charging back minutes later as UMass Lowell senior forward Connor Sodergren scored his second goal of the season at 6:10 to tie the game 1-1. 

NU had difficulty controlling UMass Lowell following Sodergren’s goal, which led to UMass Lowell senior forward Charlie Levesque scoring his third goal of the season to give the River Hawks a 2-1 lead at 8:43. 

UMass Lowell had the opportunity to widen its lead after NU freshman defenseman James Davenport was sent off for high sticking at 12:20. The Huskies held the River Hawks scoreless on the man advantage and were awarded their first power play of the night at 16:42 when UMass Lowell sophomore forward Matt Brown went to the penalty box for interference. 

NU’s power play struggled mightily in the absence of junior defenseman Jordan Harris, who is currently dealing with an unspecified injury and will miss Saturday’s rematch against UMass Lowell. The Huskies failed to secure a game-tying goal and the score held as NU went to the locker room down 2-1. 

“We were a little disjointed on the power play. Certainly not having [Harris] doesn’t help,” Madigan said. “We just never seemed to get into a rhythm on the power play.”

The Huskies got out to a slow start in the second period, which continued throughout the frame, with NU recording just five shots on goal. UMass Lowell freshman forward Ben Meehan was sent off for roughing at 17:31, giving NU an opportunity to tie things up before the end of the period. 

Sadie Parker

“They block a lot of shots,” Madigan said. “They get into shot lanes really well and we had some good looks and then had some shots blocked. We have to get our head up. We have to pump. We have to get pucks off to the side of the net. There’s a lot of things we can do.” 

However, the Huskies failed to capitalize on their second man advantage of the night. They also lost redshirt senior forward Grant Jozefek to injury just before the end of the period, though Madigan is hopeful he’ll play Saturday.

While they ended the second period better than they began it, the Huskies entered the third period down 2-1. 

NU played much better in the third period, but still didn’t play their best hockey. The Huskies were given their third power-play opportunity of the night when UMass Lowell sophomore forward Andre Lee was sent to the box for tripping at 12:13. However, they failed to score, and seconds after their power play ended, Levesque scored his second of the game to give the River Hawks a 3-1 lead at 14:28. 

“We kind of gave up on a play in the corner coming off the power play. We didn’t score and they made it 3-1,” Madigan said. 

UMass Lowell capped off the win with an empty-net goal from junior defenseman Seth Barton at 19:45 to make it 4-1.

The Huskies and River Hawks will compete again today 6 p.m. at Tsongas Center and Madigan is hoping to see a better effort from his side. 

“Effort wasn’t good enough from a team perspective and we just have to be better. Plain and simple,” Madigan said. “It’s about will and want and we’ll see how we respond [today].”