MASTALERZ BACKSTOPS MASSACHUSETTS TO 2-1 WIN OVER MAINE
Junior goaltender Steve Mastalerz makes 38 saves for Minutemen
AMHERST, Mass. - UMass earned its first Hockey East win of the season on Saturday night, scoring twice in a 17-second span in the second period en route to a 2-1 win over Maine at the Mullins Center. Following the victory, the Minutemen improve to 3-4-1 overall, 1-1-1 in league play, while the Black Bears fall to 3-3-1 and 0-1-1 in conference action.
Senior Michael Pereira collected his third of the season for his 90th career point and 16th career power-play goal. He is now tied for eighth in program history (with John Edwards and Ed Polcholpek) on the program's career goal scoring list and is tied for seventh, in career power-play goals with Matt Anderson.
Senior Conor Sheary extended his point-scoring streak to five straight with an assist on Pereira's tally, while freshman Ray Pigozzi, senior Branden Gracel and senior Colin Shea all chipped in a point apiece.
For a second straight night, UMass and Maine skated through a scoreless first where the Black Bears posted a sizable shot advantage, 14-5.
Then, midway through the second period, the Minutemen broke up the 0-0 deadlock with their 13th power-play goal of the year. After drawing the penalty, it was Pereira who scored with the man advantage. Sheary sent the puck to Gracel in the corner and Gracel found Pereira at the far post for a one-timer at the 8:23 mark.
Just 17 seconds later, UMass increased its advantage to 2-0. Pigozzi redirected Shea's shot from the right point past Martin Ouellette 8:40 into the stanza for his second of the season.
Maine pulled back to within one 6:11 into the third period. Devin Shore drove a slap shot through traffic from the top of the slot on a 5-on-3 to cut the deficit to 2-1.
That was all the Black Bears would manage, though, as junior Steve Mastalerz made 11 of his 38 saves on the night in the third period. Ouellette made 24 stops as Maine out-shot the Minutemen, 39-26 in the contest.
UMass went 1-for-3 on the power play, while the Black Bears were 1-for-7 with the man advantage.
The Minutemen will be back in action next Friday, Nov. 8, beginning a home-and-home with New Hampshire in Durham at 7:30 p.m.