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Men's Ice Hockey Falls at UMass 5-2
AMHERST, Mass. -- Jake Rutt (Scarborough, Maine) and Bill Norman (Stockholm, Sweden) scored second period goals, but it was not enough as the University of Maine men's ice hockey team fell to UMass 5-2 on Saturday night at the Mullins Center in Amherst, Mass.
UMass struck first on Saturday night with a goal at 5:51of the first period. Rocco Carzo had a shot that Maine goalie Martin Ouellette (St.-Hippolyte, Quebec) saved. The rebound when right to Adam Phillips and he fired it past Ouellette to give the Minutemen the 1-0 lead.
UMass extends its lead to 2-0 at 7:47 of the first period. Conor Sheary passed the puck to Branden Gracel who carried it up the first. Gracel unleashed a shot at the top of the face-off circle that beat Ouellette.
Maine pulled to within one goal at 5:36 of the second period with a power play goal by Jake Rutt. He received a pass from Devin Shore (Ajax, Ontario) and fired the puck past UMass goalie Steve Mastalerz. Ben Hutton (Prescott, Ontario) also assisted on the goal.
Maine wasted no time tying the game at 2-2. Klas Leidermark (Gavle, Sweden) got the puck to Bill Norman (Stockholm, Sweden), who fired a shot from the tight face-off circle. Andrew Cerretani (Pelham, N.H.) passed the puck to Leidermark to pick up the second assist on the goal.
UMass grabbed the lead at 2:55 of third period with a power play goal. Brandon Gracel had a shot that Ouellette saved, but the puck lay under his right pad. Zack LaRue was able to get a stick on it and push it into the back of the net.
UMass extended its lead to 4-2 at 13:25 of the third when Conor Sheary had his shot from the top of the right face-off circle beat Ouellette.
Kevin Czepiel scored an empty net goal at 19:16 to make it a 5-2 final.
UMass outshot Maine 27-25 in the game. The Black Bears were 1-for-4 on the power play, while UMass finished 0-3.
Maine goalie Ouellette made 22 saves in goal for the Black Bears. He falls to 7-10-6 on the season. Mastalerz made 23 saves for UMass and improves to 3-6-0.
Maine falls to 9-17-6 on the season and 5-12-6 in Hockey East play. UMass improves to 11-17-2 overall, 8-14-1 in conference play.
Maine returns home for its final series of the season at Alfond Arena next weekend when it hosts Northeastern for a pair of games. Tickets are available for the game, including some balcony seats, as Maine students will be away for spring break.