LOWELL, Mass. - Sophomore F Scott Wilson (Oakville Ont.) and junior D Chad Ruhwedel (San Diego, Calif.) each had goals, while junior F Joseph Pendenza (Wilmington, Mass.) had a goal and an assist as No. 12/12 UMass Lowell defeated No. 13/15 Boston University, 3-1, Saturday night in a Hockey East battle in front of 5,979 at the Tsongas Arena.
The win was UMass Lowell's fourth straight as it improved to 18-9-2 overall (12-8-2 in Hockey East) and clinched a place in the Hockey East Tournament. The River Hawks, who travel to Boston College on Tuesday, (7:00), can finish no lower than seventh place.
Boston University slipped to 14-14-2 overall and 11-9-2 in Hockey East.
UMass Lowell outshot the Terrier 39-16, including 15-3 in the third period.
Freshman G Connor Hellebuyck (Commerce, Mich.) stopped 15 shots en route to his ninth straight victory. Hellebuyck is 10-0-0 in his last 11 appearances (10-1-0 overall).
UMass Lowell broke a scoreless tie in the first period when Wilson picked off a pass in the neutral zone and unloaded a monstrous slap shot from just inside the blue line. The puck rang off the crossbar and into the net, giving UMass Lowell a 1-0 lead at the 5:47 mark. The goal was Wilson's 10th of the season and his third in the past four games.
The River Hawks extended their lead in the second period when an odd man rush resulted in a good scoring chance for Pendenza at 9:57. Pendenza's shot was turned away by freshman G Sean Maguire, but Ruhwedel was in good position to gather the rebound and stick it in the top right corner of the net, his seventh of the season.
Boston University narrowed the gap in the third period when a UMass Lowell power play went awry, resulting in a shorthanded goal for BU F Evan Rodriguez at 8:25.
However, UMass Lowell responded less than four minutes later when Pendenza netted his 12th goal of the season and brought the River Hawk lead to 3-1.
Boston University had plenty of chances to tighten the score, but the Terriers went 0-5 on the power play as the UMass Lowell penalty kill continued to show why it ranks fourth in Hockey East.
UMass Lowell outshot BU, 39-16. Maguire stopped 36 shots for the Terriers.