Mike Pandolfo scored his 50th career goal, but it wasn't enough as the Terriers lost to UMass/Lowell. Photos by Rob Klein.
UMass/Lowell scored a pair of third-period goals within a span of 1:12 en route to a 3-2 win over the Terriers in Hockey East action at Lowell's Tsongas Arena on Saturday night (December 1st).
The loss dropped B.U.'s overall record to 8-3-1, while it slipped to 3-2-1 in league action. In the meantime, the River Hawks, who have beaten the Terriers four straight times dating back to last year, improved to 10-2-0 overall and 6-2-0 in Hockey East.
"This is the second game in a row that we played a real solid game and lost," Terrier head coach Jack Parker said in referring to last Sunday's 4-2 loss to Cornell in which Parker felt his team outplayed the Big Red. "I was pleased with our effort tonight. We played smart and hard.
"I like my team and how they have been playing," continued the coach. "I just don't like the fact we are playing well and losing."
Ryan Whitney put the Terriers on the scoreboard with his second goal of the season.
The Terriers jumped to a 1-0 lead just 2:24 into the game when freshman Ryan Whitney (Scituate) scored his second goal of the season when his wrist shot from five feet away beat River Hawks' goalie Cam McCormick to his glove side.
It was just the third goal of the year allowed by McCormick, who entered the game with a stretch of 118 minutes of shutout hockey. In fact, in six previous games, he had allowed just two goals. But, Whitney pulled the trigger so quickly that McCormick could just wave at the puck as it went past him. Sophomore Steve Greeley (Scituate) and freshman David Klema (Roseau, MN) earned the assists.
Just 2:06 later, at 4:30, Tom Rouleau evened the score when he picked up a loose puck behind Terrier sophomore goalie Sean Fields (Edmonton, ALTA) and nudged it into the net. Fields made the initial save on a shot by Peter Hay, but the puck got loose behind Fields, and Rouleau was there to pick it up.
Senior captain Mike Pandolfo (Burlington) put the Terriers ahead, 2-1, at 10:13 of the second period when he converted on the Terrier power play. Freshman Bryan Miller (Wayne, NJ) started the play from the Lowell blue line when he passed the puck to freshman Brian McConnell (Norfolk) at the right faceoff circle. McConnell caught Pandolfo coming down the slot. He one-timed his shot past McCormick, and B.U. had the lead.
For Pandolfo, it was the 50th goal of his collegiate career.
That's the way the score remained until the 9:47 mark of the third period when, with Lowell skating on the power play, Mark Concannon picked up a rebound and shot it past Fields to tie the score. "Until that point, I think we had control of the game," said Parker.
"That power play goal gave them momentum and got them going."
Just 1:12 later, at 11:35, Laurent Meunier found himself at center ice behind the Terrier defense. Kevin Kotyluk spotted Meunier and lofted the puck to him. He came down the left wing boards, cut to the right and beat Fields to the glove side for what proved to be the game-winning goal.
The Terriers, who finished the game with 19 shots, never threatened after that.
"We just didn't get enough going offensively tonight," said Parker.
"We didn't play as well in the second half of the game, and we had a couple of mental letdowns that hurt us. We also took too many penalties (7 for 14 minutes).
"They (Lowell) hung around long enough to win."