By Matt Noonan
BOSTON, MA – Scott Wilson punched UMass Lowell’s ticket to the Hockey East Championship for the first time since 2009 as he deposited his 15th strike of the season at 12:30 in the third period.
Wilson corralled a loose puck around center ice, connected with a streaking Riley Wetmore down the far boards before he received the puck in the slot and fired home the game-winner past Providence netminder Jon Gillies (31 saves).
Providence (17-14-7) earned the lead off a shot from Kevin Rooney, his first collegiate goal at 8:59 in the first before UMass Lowell (25-10-2) responded with a strike from A.J. White 34 seconds into third, which tied the game.
Neither squad capitalized on the power play, as both units concluded the contest a combined 0 for 9.
UMass Lowell’s Connor Hellebuyck, who leads the conference in goals against (1.46), save percentage (.946) and winning percentage (.895), recorded a season-best 34 saves.
The River Hawks will face-off against the winner of BC-BU tomorrow at 7 p.m. UMass Lowell has appeared in two conference championships (’94 and ’09), but lost both matches to the Terriers.