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Hockey East Online
Weekly Release
November 5, 2007
~Three teams take first league wins of the year~


CCM / RBK Player of the Week Joe Vitale of Northeastern
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WAKEFIELD, Mass. -- Boston University came out of last weekend with four points, including a 5-2 win at Providence College on Thursday night and a 7-4 win against UMass-Lowell on Saturday at Agganis Arena. Northeastern pulled off one of the biggest wins in the league to date with a 2-1 victory at No. 4 New Hampshire on Saturday night, after rebounding from a 7-4 loss on Friday at Matthews Arena at the hands of the Wildcats. No. 5 Boston College and No. 12 Maine skated to a 1-1 tie on Friday night at Conte Forum in one of the marquee matchups of the weekend.

The Terriers picked up their first league win of the season on Thursday with a five-goal effort and then they turned around on Saturday and registered a season-high seven goals vs. the River Hawks. Sophomore goaltender Brett Bennett (Williamsville, N.Y.) earned the win in both games for the Terriers with 20 stops on Thursday vs. the Friars, while sophomore Luke Popko (Skillman, N.J.) and Hockey East Rookie of the Week Nick Bonino (Unionville, N.Y.) led the way offensively for BU. Popko had two goals against UML on Saturday, while Bonino tallied the game-winner on Saturday.

Greg Cronin’s Huskies came out on Saturday with a weekend split with UNH, as CCM/RBK Player of the Week Joe Vitale (St. Louis, Mo.) had a three point week (1g, 2a), including two points with the game-winning goal in the victory on Saturday. The Huskies defeated the Wildcats for the first time in 19 meetings, which dated back to February 15, 2002. UNH’s potent top line of James vanRiemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.), Mike Radja (Yorkville, Ill.) and Matt Fornataro (Calgary, Alberta) had an eight-point (3g, 5a) effort on Friday at Matthews Arena. On Friday night, the Eagles and Black Bears didn’t give each other much to work with, as BC’s Carl Sneep (Nisswa, Minn.) got the lead early and then Maine’s Billy Ryan (Milton, Mass.) knotted the game to earn the key road point for the Black Bears. Pure Hockey Defensive Player of the Week Ben Bishop (Des Peres, Mo.) made 26 saves, while freshman John Muse (East Falmouth, Mass.) stopped 19 shots by the Black Bears in the meeting between two nationally ranked opponents.

Merrimack College also earned it’s first Hockey East win on Thursday night with a 3-1 road win at UMass-Lowell, marking their first win against the River Hawks in 11 meetings. Sophomore goalie Andrew Brathwaite (Kingston, Ontario) stopped 22 shots in the win, while freshman Chris Barton (Calgary, Alberta) recorded the game-winning goal as the second period ended. Massachusetts then took out the Warriors on Saturday at the Mullins Center for their first conference victory of the season, 5-1, at the Mullins Center. Freshman forward Mike Lecomte (St. Hyacinthe, Ontario) potted two goals for the Minutemen, while sophomore Will Ortiz (Framingham, Mass.) scored his third goal in the last four games with the game-winning tally.


Vitale helped the Huskies to a weekend split with No. 4 ranked New Hampshire. Had three points on the week (1g,2a) and the game-winning goal on Saturday night at the Whittemore Center.


Bonino tallied three points (1g, 2a) in a four-point weekend for the Terriers. Recorded the game-winning goal and two assists on Saturday’s 7-4 win over UMass-Lowell.


Bishop made 26 saves in the 1-1 tie with No. 5 Boston College on Friday night at Conte Forum, including three saves in the overtime session.


Chris Barton, MC (Fr., F, Calgary, Alberta) Scored the game-winning goal against Lowell Thursday night.

Brett Bennett, BU (So., G, Williamsville, N.Y.) Earned both wins in goal for the Terriers last week, posting a 1.86 goals-against average and a .914 save percentage.

Andrew Braithwaite, MC (So., G, Kingston, Ontario) Stopped 22 shots in Merrimack’s 3-1 win at Lowell Thursday night, being named the game’s first star.

Justin Braun, UMass (So., D, Vadnais Heights, Minn.) Notched two assists in Saturday’s 5-1 win over Merrimack for UMass’ first Hockey East win of the season.

Maury Edwards, UML (Fr., D, Rocky Rapids, Alb.) Notched his first career two-goal game at Boston University with an even strength and a power play goal on Saturday.

Matt Fornataro, UNH (Sr., F, Calgary, Alberta) Registered a goal and two assists in a 7-4 win Friday over Northeastern at Matthews Arena.

Ben Holmstrom, UML (So., F, Colorado Springs, Colo.) recorded the fifth multi-point game of his career with a two assist effort at Boston University Saturday.

Mike Lecomte, UMass (Fr., F, St. Hyacinthe, Quebec) Scored two goals on three shots in UMass’ 5-1 win over Hockey East rival Merrimack.

Wade MacLeod, NU (Fr., F, Coquitlam, B.C.) Scored the first two goals of his career on Friday and Saturday against UNH.

Luke Popko, BU (So., F, Skillman, N.J.) Scored his first two goals of the season in the Terriers’ 7-4 victory over UMass Lowell.

Kevin Regan, UNH (Sr., G, S. Boston, Mass.) Went 1-1-0 on the week had 33 saves in a win over NU Friday and followed that up with 27 saves on Saturday in a 2-1 loss.

Rob Ricci, MC (So., F, Brampton, Ontario) Posted two goals and an assist in two games. Now has points in four straight and six of seven.

Billy Ryan, Maine (Sr., F, Milton, Mass.) scored the game-tying goal 9:42 into the second period on Friday night as Maine skated to a 1-1 tie at Boston College

Carl Sneep, BC (So., D, Nisswa, Minn.) Scored his first goal of the season in the team’s 1-1 overtime tie against Maine.

James vanRiemsdyk, UNH (Fr., F, Middletown, N.J.) Registered a goal and two assists in a 7-4 win over Northeastern on Friday.


Boston College: Boston College killed all seven Maine power plays on Friday and has killed 44-of-46 opponent power plays (.957) through seven games this season which ranks second (behind Princeton) among national leaders...With one powerplay goal agaisnt the Black Bears, BC has scored at least one man-advantage goal in each of the last four games (six PPGs). ..BC’s power play is scoring at a 25.7 percent rating (9-for-35), which ranks fifth nationally...Freshman goaltender John Muse has played in all seven games and has registered a 1.75 goals against average and a .933 save percentage.

Boston University: In all, 17 different Terriers scored at least one point during the team’s two wins this week...The Terriers’ seven-goal output against UMass Lowell was their highest ever in Agganis Arena and the most in a home game since Nov. 30, 2003, in a 7-2 win over Yale at Walter Brown Arena... BU scored five goals in the third period against the River Hawks, the first time that has happened since Nov. 19, 2004 - also against UMass Lowell (second period of a 7-2 win).

Maine: The University of Maine men’s ice hockey team is currently unbeaten in its last five games...Ben Bishop was named the ITECH Hockey East Goaltender of the Month in October...It is the third straight October that he has received the honor...Senior Nolan Boike (Arlington, Mass.) earned his first career point when he set up Billy Ryan’s game-tying goal on Friday night... Billy Ryan’s goal on Friday night was the 30th goal of his career... Bishop has 24 games in his career where he has allowed just one goal and has a record of 22-0-2 in those 24 games.

Massachusetts: UMass improves to 36-0-1 in the last 37 games where the Minutemen score four-or-more goals...The five goals for UMass in the win over Merrimack was the most since defeating Maine 5-2 in the 2007 Hockey East Quarterfinals…Three goals in the second period was the most since scoring three in the third period against Maine in the 2007 regular-season finale …UMass has now beaten Merrimack in the last eight meetings at the Mullins Center…Alex Berry’s (Danvers, Mass.) short-handed goal was the team’s second of the season which is the most for the Minutemen since the 2005 season when they had four as a team.

UMass-Lowell: The River Hawks were out-shot by the both the Warriors (27 to 23) and Terriers (42 to 19) over the weekend, marking just the fourth time in the last two years (41 games) that the River Hawks have been out-shot in back-to-back games… The UML penalty kill is third in Hockey East a 87.5% after going 6-for-7 over the weekend…Maury Edwards (Rocky Rapids, Alb.) scored two goals on Saturday at Boston University and leads the River Hawks with three goals on the season; Edwards has two power play markers …Sophomore Chris Auger (Belleville, Ont.) had an assist in both contests and has a three-game point streak (0g, 3a)…Sophomore forward Jonathan Maniff (Revere, Mass.) scored his first career goal, a 5-on-3 tally, Thursday night against Merrimack…The River Hawks continue their Hockey East schedule this week at New Hampshire (Friday) and home against Massachusetts (Saturday).

Merrimack: The 3-1 win at Lowell Thursday was the Warriors’ first conference win since January 5, 2007 when they defeated UMass 2-1, 19 Hockey East games ago...The three goals are the most they have scored in a conference game since December 5, 2006 when they blanked the Minutemen 3-0 in Amherst...The Lowell victory is Coach Dennehy’s first in Lowell as Merrimack’s head coach. Merrimack last won in Lowell on January 17, 2004 by a 3-0 score...Chris Barton’s (Calgary, Alb.) goal late in the second period was the second buzzer-beater in two games for the Warriors, both of Barton’s goals have been game-winners...Fraser Allan (North Battleford, Sask.) registered his first collegiate point, an assist on Merrimack’s first goal at Lowell...Rob Ricci (Brampton, Ont.) has a four-game scoring streak (three goals, two assists) and has posted at least a point in six of Merrimack’s seven games this season... Ricci has taken 68% of the Warriors’ faceoffs this season winning 91-of-181 draws.

New Hampshire: UNH is off to its best start (4-1-0) since the 2003-04 team went 4-1-0 over its first five games en route to a 6-1-0 start to the season...On Saturday night, senior captain Matt Fornataro saw his career-high four-game goal-scoring streak snapped. Amazingly, the senior forward has scored five goals over the first five games and has nine points...Freshman James vanRiemsdyk had a career night on Friday with a goal and two assists in a win over Northeastern...Junior defensemen Jamie Fritsch (Odenton, Md.) scored his second game-winning goal of the season in Friday night’s win...The seven-goal output is the most since a 7-1 win at Vermont on January 5, 2007...In all but one game this season, the Wildcats have scored three goals in a period including three in the second period on Friday night.

Northeastern: Saturday’s win over New Hampshire was Northeastern’s first win over UNH since Feb. 15, 2002, and the Huskies’ first win at the Whittemore Center since Feb. 28, 1998... Freshman Wade MacLeod (Coquitlam, B.C.) has points in each of his last three games with a 2-2-4 line over those games. His goal Friday night was the first of his career...Randy Guzior (Lemont, Ill.) had a career-high three points against New Hampshire on Friday night. He is tied for the team lead with five points after getting just eight points (6-2-8) in 36 games last season...Northeastern’s first five games were at home, marking the most home games to begin a season since 1948-49, when Northeastern’s first 10 games were at home.

Providence College: The Friars, who had not scored a shorthanded goal in the first six games, recorded two short-handed tallies against BU on Thursday…Senior Jon Rheault (Deering, N.H.) has 81 career points (41 goals, 40 assists), 19 shy of becoming the 48th Friar all-time to reach the 100-point plateau…Rheault is on a five game point streak (2 goals, five assists)

Vermont: UVM will travel to NU for a two-game series this weekend, senior goalie Joe Fallon (Bemidji, Minn.) has recorded four of his 17 career shutouts against NU...Fallon is 5-0-2 with a 1.00 goals against average in seven starts against the Huskies...Junior Dean Strong (Mississauga, Ontario) has four goals and two assists in six career games against Northeastern...Kevin Sneddon is 6-1-2 against Northeastern since being named head coach at Vermont...Vermont is 3-1-2 against Merrimack since entering Hockey East...Vermont’s opponents have gone a combined 13-2-3 this season.

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