Third Period Eruption Pushes NEC Past #6/8 Men's Hockey

Third Period Eruption Pushes NEC Past #6/8 Men's Hockey

BOSTON, Mass. – A three goal third period carried the Pilgrims of New England College to a 6-3 New England Hockey Conference win over No. 6/8 men's ice hockey Saturday afternoon at the Edward T. Barry Ice Rink.

THE BASICS

#6/8 UMass Boston 3, New England College 6

UMass Boston 13-6-0, NEHC 8-4-0
New England College 11-6-1, NEHC 6-5-1

HOW IT HAPPENED

After a Tyler Sifferlen (North Andover, Mass.) goal tied contest at 3-3 less than two minutes into the third period, the Pilgrims erupted for three straight scores over the final eight minutes to clinch the huge upset and four-point weekend. 

In the opening period, UMass Boston came out flying, rattling off three shots on NEC netminder Kyle Shapiro.

After weathering a defensive storm in their end, the Pilgrims fought back, evening out the scoring chances five minutes into the first period.

The Beacons took the lead at 8:23 of the first period, when Daniel Nachbaur (Richland, Wash.) let loose a shot from up along the wall.  Sifferlen buried the rebound past Shapiro.

The lead was short-lived, when the Pilgrims created an odd-man rush just 37 seconds later, and Joe Osaka blasted a one-time pass from Adam Zöllner past Beacons goaltender Bailey MacBurnie (Beverly, Mass.) and knotted the game up at one.

UMass Boston took advantage of a tripping penalty on Nicholas Potvin (Chambly, Quebec) four minutes later.  Nick Albano (Beverly, Mass.) converted on the man-up opportunity to give the Beacons a 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission.

The second period opened-up the same as the first, with UMass unloading more shots on Shapiro, who looked sharp under the pressure.

The Beacons penalty kill began to struggle once Sifferlen was sent off for interference midway through the frame. Zöllner collected a rebound off of Mike Whitehair's slap shot from the point, and put it into the open net to tie the score at 2-2

Connor Fries added to the Pilgrims' surging powerplay, nicely picking up a cross-zone saucer pass right to his tape from Carlos Fornaris and backhanded it cleanly past MacBurnie at 12:53.

The Beacons withstood a physical remaining seven minutes to keep the deficit at one (3-2).

The third period got off to an inspired start, with UMass creating a lot of pressure in NEC's end, moving the puck really well along the boards.

At just 1:03 into the third stanza, Garrett Gallagher (Aston, PA) tossed the puck from the right point on net, and Sifferlen tipped in his second goal of the night, tying the game at three-aside.

UMass was able to hold onto the tie until 12:59 when Andreas Zöllner (Värnamo, Sweden) finished off a give-and-go odd-man rush past the Beacons defense, and put the Pilgrims up 4-3.

Osaka scored his second of the night two minutes later at 15:23 on a pass along the boards from Kyle Arenson extending the lead to 5-3.

Fries sealed the game at 17:58, putting the puck into the Beacons' empty net, serving UMass their second loss in as many nights.

BY THE NUMBERS

  • UMass outshot NEC 43-36, and maintained the edge in faceoffs, winning 47 of 80 draws.
  • The Beacons went 1-4 on the powerplay, while the Pilgrims finished 2-4
  • NEC have now won 9 of their last 12 games, outscoring opponents 50-26 during the stretch.
  • Larkin's assist puts him at 32 points on the year, giving him the lead in the DIII scoring race (165, 16a), and also extended his NEC points streak to nine games. The senior has scored 6 goals and 8 assists for 14 points across the span.
  • Sifferlen's two goal night was his second career multiple-goal game.
  • Mike Whitehair extended his points streak to 5 games, notching 3 goals and 9 assists for 12 points.

WHO'S NEXT

UMass Boston will host Castleton University on Friday at 7 p.m.

Release provided by Ray Waldron - Sports Information Intern