Tag: Derek Arnold

Mass. College Hockey: UML Tops Notre Dame In Hockey East Semis, 4-0

By Matt Noonan 

BOSTON, Mass. – The UMass Lowell men’s ice hockey team is headed back to the Hockey East Championship.

The River Hawks, who’ll compete for their second consecutive conference title tomorrow evening against either New Hampshire or Providence College, blanked Notre Dame, 4-0, in the Hockey East semifinals on Friday evening at the TD Garden.

“It was a great win,” said UMass Lowell head coach Norm Bazin, who guided the River Hawks to 24-10-4 overall record this season.

“I felt the guys were on cue this morning in the pregame skate and they certainly were. I thought we were sharp, our special teams capitalized and that’s always a big factor.”

Christian Folin provided the River Hawks with the lead for good in the opening session by firing home a pass from A.J. White from the nearside circle, which bounced of Notre Dame’s Kevin Lind’s skate and trickled into the Fighting Irish net at 10:13.

Derek Arnold doubled his team’s advantage roughly three minutes later when he raced down the nearside wing and rifled a shot past Steven Summerhays (18 saves), which provided the River Hawks with a 2-0 lead at the first intermission.

“Notre Dame had a line rush and we were back-checking. Zack Kamrass made a great play standing up with a great stick, a poke check and I was coming back and picked up that puck from Zack and I just went off to the races,” Arnold said of his first period goal, which was his 11th tally of the season. “I saw little daylight, so I went with it.”

UML added to its total by potting two more goals in the second period. Evan Campbell netted a rebound in front of the Notre Dame cage before Kamrass blasted an attempt from the nearside circle. Both goals were power play strikes.

“I thought we capitalized on our chances,” Bazin said. “It’s always important to do that against good competition and in (the) playoffs you don’t get that many opportunities, so when you can capitalize on two power plays and start with a lead that helps.”

According to the Hockey East website, UMass Lowell has registered 31 power play goals on 148 attempts this year, while Notre Dame has stopped 144 of 171 attempts. The Fighting Irish had one power play in this evening’s contest, but was unable to push the puck past UML’s Connor Hellebuyck, who stopped 35 shots and earned his 11th career shutout.

“It’s a great feeling, it’s definitely a milestone in my life and I am very thankful for the opportunity that Lowell’s give me and I don’t think I would be setting any records if it wasn’t for the team I have in front of me too,” said Hellebuyck. “It’s not just me it’s them too.”

With tonight’s setback, Notre Dame falls to 23-14-2 overall. The Fighting Irish are now 0-3 this season against the River Hawks, as they dropped back-to-back contests in Lowell in November.

Notre Dame will most likely continue its 2013-14 campaign next weekend, but won’t know its next foe until the NCAA Division 1 bracket is released on Sunday, March 23.

“It’s not easy getting (to the semifinals),” said Notre Dame head coach Jeff Jackson. “You have to take advantage of it when you do.

“Getting to the Boston (TD) Garden, it should be everything and that’s what we all should be striving for and having a chance to win in this environment…so when you get here you have to enjoy the experience and take advantage of it.”

UMass Lowell will look to even its conference championship mark at 2-2 tomorrow with a win. They hadn’t won a Hockey East crown until they defeated Jack Parker’s Boston University Terriers last March, 1-0.

“The first time’s hard, but the second time is even harder,” said Arnold, who netted the game-winner last year against the Terriers. “We put ourselves in a position to go after another championship and we’re going to prepare properly tonight and tomorrow and go for that.”

Mass College Sports: Top 10 Stories From 2013

By NoontimeSports.com 

In honor of the New Year, which is slowly approaching, we’ve decided to revisit 10 of our favorite stories and moments from the past 12 months.

On behalf of everyone from NoontimeSports.com, we’d like to wish you a very Happy and Healthy New Year!

Moment No. 1: There were some tremendous finishes to the various games we covered this past year, but probably one of the most amazing endings occurred in March when UMass Lowell topped Boston University, 1-0, in the Hockey East Championship. The win propelled the River Hawks to the Frozen Four.

Yet, before UML made the journey to Pittsburgh, we caught up with Derek Arnold, who netted the game-winner against the Terriers.

Moment No. 2: WPI’s men’s basketball team won 22 consecutive contests before falling to Springfield College, a squad they defeated in the NEWMAC Championship. Their run toward a conference title was certainly a special one, which Coach Chris Bartley and the Engineers will always remember.

Moment No. 3: Probably one of the best football games we covered this past year was Bridgewater State vs. Framingham State. The Rams, who defeated the Bears and claimed the inaugural MASCAC crown, needed a late score to earn the win.

* Moment No. 4: After falling to Endicott College during the regular season, Western New England managed to rebound by defeating the Gulls in the CCC Conference Men’s Lacrosse Championship, 9-5. Brandon Body picked up his 11th win between the pipes as he deflected 14 of 19 shots.

Moment No. 5: Sticking with lacrosse, Endicott College’s women’s lacrosse team, which defeated Western New England during the CCC Conference Women’s Lacrosse Championship, earned their first NCAA tournament win in program history by defeating Springfield College, 4-3.

Moment No. 6: Tufts University’s softball team, which finished its season 46-3 overall, claimed its first NCAA Championship with a 6-5 win over SUNY Cortland. The Jumbos, who were making their fourth appearance in the NCAA Finals, won all four of its contests in the winners bracket.

Staying the NESCAC, another exciting championship occurred a few months prior the Jumbos championship as Amherst College’s men’s basketball team celebrated its second NCAA Championship.

Moment No. 7: Kyle Juszczyk, who played fullback for the Harvard Crimson, was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in during the NFL Draft in April. Two months later, we ran a quick profile on our blog about the rookie fullback, who completed in his first NFL minicamp.

In July, we highlighted the various college players, who suited up for the various local teams that were competing for jobs in the National Football League (NFL).

Moment No. 8: One thing we learned through our various preseason college football coverage was that WPI’s football team, specifically the offensive line, had “SWAG.”

Moment No. 9: After earning an impressive road win against New Haven, we caught up with Robert Talley, Stonehill’s football head coach, who discussed the exciting victory, but also the Skyhawks’ momentum. Stonehill clinched its first winning season since 1996 with an 8-3 overall mark.

A few months after our interview, Talley was featured in Sports Illustrated’s ‘Faces in the Crowd.’

Moment No. 10: We’ll conclude our list with a highlight reel goal, which was scored by Wheaton College’s Luke Finkelstein during the first round of the NCAA Division 3 Men’s Soccer Tournament. Finkelstein’s goal secured a 2-0 win for the Lyons over Plattsburgh State. You can see the goal by fast forwarding to the 0:54 mark, enjoy.

Mass. College Hockey: UML’s Arnold Connects On Wraparound Clincher

By Matt Noonan 

BOSTON, MA – UMass Lowell may not always be linked to Boston College and Boston University, two clubs that have experienced a great deal of success in the college hockey world over the past few decades, but this season the River Hawks turned the tables by capturing their first Hockey East regular season crown and conference championship on Saturday with a 1-0 victory against the Terriers at the TD Garden.

Derek Arnold secured the win for UML as he corralled the puck behind the BU cage and netted the game-winner at 11:09 in the third, which sent the Blue and Red supporters into a frenzy.

“It’s pretty special,” Arnold said of his game-winning strike. “I had a large group of family here tonight, they were in a box, and growing up me and my dad used to come every year (and we’d see) BC and BU win this tournament every year, so it’s very, very special for Lowell to win it.”

Arnold’s late-game strike wasn’t his first in this year’s conference tournament as he netted the game-winner against Maine last Friday in overtime to secure the River Hawks a trip to Causeway Street.

When it came to his goal this evening – a wraparound – Arnold explained his short stick hasn’t always allowed him to score that way, but something worked tonight as he deposited the puck into Sean Maguire’s net to seal the win.

“(The puck) went off Scott Wilson’s skate and it kind of went almost to the corner, but I was kind of down deep and it kind of went right on my stick and Maguire was way out of the net, so I just saw some daylight like I said and I took it to the net,” said Arnold.

“I’m usually not too successful on wraparounds because I’ve got a small stick, but for tonight to get that it was pretty cool.”

UML had never won a conference championship and lost its two meetings against BU in 1994 and 2009, but the third time proved to be the difference.

“We have some confidence and once we get rolling we’re rolling,” explained Arnold. “We had an 11 or 12 game unbeaten streak earlier (this season), and we won the regular season, so now we win this and hopefully we’ll see what happens tomorrow and see where we’re going, so it should be cool.

“Last year we got bounced out in that last game down in Bridgeport, so (we’re) hoping for a better result this year.”

Mass. College Hockey: UML 1, BU 0 (29th Hockey East Championship Summary)

By Matt Noonan 

BOSTON, MA — The UMass Lowell River Hawks captured their first Hockey East crown in program history by defeating Boston University, 1-0 at the TD Garden.

Derek Arnold broke the scoreless drought with a wrap around goal at 11:09 in the third, which secured the win.

UML (26-10-2) raced down the ice on a 3-on-2 rush during the final frame and watched Chad Ruhwedel‘s shot deflect off teammate Scott Wilson‘s skates, which forced BU’s Sean Maguire out of the crease. Maguire, who attempted to stop the initial shot by diving to his right, didn’t see Arnold, who corralled the loose puck behind the net prior to his game-clinching strike.

UML had lost to BU in their last two championship appearances in 1994 and 2009. BU’s season concludes with a 21-16-2 mark.

* We will have more on this game shortly!

Mass. College Hockey: Hockey East Championship Weekend Roundtable

By NoontimeSports.com 

In honor of the Hockey East semifinals and finals, which commence later today, we’ve decided to call upon the local college hockey gurus to breakdown each matchup and determine who’ll be skating around the TD Garden Saturday evening with some hardware.

Noontime Sports would like to thank Joshua Kummins (Associate Editor of BostonSportsU18.com & SB Nation College Hockey Contributor), Mike McMahon (Senior Writer/Recruiting Editor of College Hockey News), Josh Seguin (College Hockey News) and Rich Slate (Boston Metro) for their help with this particular post.

So, without further ado, here’s our breakdown:

Game No. 1: No. 1 UMass Lowell vs. No. 4 Providence College (Fri., 5 p.m.)

Who is one player to watch in this particular matchup? What can we expect from him? 

Mike McMahon: Has to be Jon Gillies. Quite frankly, the Friars have gone and will go as far as Gillies takes them. He hasn’t shown an indication that he’s wilt under the bright lights. That being said neither has Connor Hellebuyck. It’s definitely a showcase of goaltenders here and likely a 2-1 game. Goals will be at a premium.

Rich Slate: Providence’s freshman goaltender Jon Gillies, who was arguably the top player in Hockey East this season. He won’t give up many goals and was 1-2 against UMass Lowell this season.

Which line will make the biggest impact for Providence and UML?

Joshua Kummins: Each forward on the Friars’ top three lines are double-digit point scorers. Freshman Mark Jankowski and senior Tim Schaller start on the top line, while sophomore Ross Mauermann is a stalwart in the middle of the second unit.

McMahon: Getting Shane Luke back is a big plus for the Friars. He really helps solidify three lines for Providence. For UML it’s Riley Wetmore‘s line. They — and especially him — do a lot of things that go underappreciated. All three of those guys — Wetmore, Derek Arnold and Ryan McGrath — are solid two-way players.

How does UMass Lowell defeat PC and advance to Saturday? 

Kummins: This game will be about defense because after getting this far, I cannot expect either Gillies or Hellebuyck to have a “bad” game.

Josh Seguin: It will probably be a pretty defensive game, but they need to do what they do best, which is timely scoring and responding to everything the Friars send at them.

How does Providence College defeat UML and advance to Saturday? 

Seguin: Jon GIllies will have to take control of the game. The young guys have to stay composed, too.

Slate: Providence will have to find a way to score more goals against the River Hawks. In their two losses against them this season they had one goal in each contest.

Who wins this series and why? Score prediction? 

Seguin: UML wins, 3-1. Right now, they are playing some of the best hockey in the country. Providence is young and may struggle with the environment.

Slate: The River Hawks have been one of the hottest teams in college hockey for the second half of the season and they will be looking for revenge after getting upset in the Hockey East playoffs last season by PC. My pick: UMass Lowell wins 3-2.

Game No. 2: No. 2 Boston College vs. No. 3 Boston University (Fri., 8 p.m.)

Who is one player to watch in this particular matchup? What can we expect from him?

Kummins: Everybody knows how dynamic Johnny Gaudreau is for Boston College, but Steven Whitney is a senior that has kicked it up a notch in his final season in a Maroon and Gold sweater. The Reading, Mass. native and Gridiron Club of Greater Boston Walter Brown Award winner led all Hockey East players with 25 goals, but his 126 career points still trails his older brother Joe Whitney (2007-11), who is tied for 42nd in the all-time BC record books.

Seguin: Johnny Gaudreau has to be the go-to player for the Eagles. If the Terriers do not stop him, it will be a long night. Gaudreau has been a primetime player in his career and I would expect that to continue this weekend.

Which line will make the biggest impact for BC and BU? 

Kummins: Gaudreau-Pat Mullane-Whitney would have been the definite answer for the Eagles about six weeks ago, but head coach Jerry York has shuffled things up a bit after a dry spell that saw the Eagles go 2-4-1 in January. Even with Mullane and Whitney shifting down to join sophomore Quinn Smith on the second line, the trio is still potent in BC’s balanced attack.

For the Terriers, the answer is simple: Matt Nieto, Danny O’Regan, and Evan Rodrigues, who make up BU’s second line. They’ve combined for 33 goals and 40 assists this season. O’Regan, a St. Sebastian’s product, leads all Hockey East first-years with 36 points.

McMahon: The Gaudreau line for BC is the one to watch for, obviously. For BU, I’d keep an eye on Nieto’s line.

How does BC defeat BU and advance to Saturday? 

McMahon: They’re going to need their defense to really rise to the occasion. There’s no reason to believe they won’t, but at this time of year, you need to start from the back end.

Seguin: BC just has to be BC, quite simply. If they do the little things and don’t defeat themselves they will win this one. A steady dose of Johnny Gaudreau, Steven Whitney and Pat Mullane may be difficult to handle for the Terriers, so get them involved.

How does BU defeat BC and advance to Saturday? 

McMahon: They need to get a solid game out of Sean Maguire, who looked terrific vs. Merrimack last week. I also think they BU should try to keep the puck moving, especially in the offensive zone, cycle when they can. Make that BC defense work. BC’s dangerous with the puck, and the best defense is to make sure they don’t have possession.

Seguin: BU needs to play stout, defensive hockey. The defensive breakdowns that plagued them the better part of the second half cannot be present. BU needs to stop Gaudreau, Whitney and Mullane. If they can do those things they could easily pull the upset.

Prediction: Who wins this game and why? Score Prediction?  

Kummins: BC’s recent domination in the Hockey East Tournament (and its senior experience on the big stage) will prove to be the difference in this game. Over the last four years, the Eagles have won 14 conference tournament games and I see that streak continuing in a 5-3 win.

McMahon: It’s an interesting matchup because both of these teams aren’t nearly as deep as they typically are, but I was really impressed with BU last week and I think they upset the Eagles here. It’s a close game though, maybe even OT, but I’m going 4-3 BU. The Terriers need the win to stay alive in the Pairwise, where BC will make the NCAA tournament regardless of the result.

Game No. 3: Hockey East Championship (Sat., 7 p.m.)

Based off your predicted winners on Friday, who wins on Saturday and why? 

Kummins: My championship match of Boston College and UMass Lowell should be a great one, especially since both squads are headed to the NCAA tournament. Both teams are on strong streaks, but I think it is BC’s Garden experience that pays off in a close victory.

McMahon: Defense wins championships and there isn’t a better all-around defense than Lowell, who’ll win 3-2.

Seguin: UML right now is the most complete team of the four remaining. The River Hawks beat the Eagles about a month ago. They respond well and score in timely situations, which makes them dangerous.

Slate: BC will defeat UMass Lowell because of their experience in the Beanpot Finals, Hockey East playoffs and NCAA Tournament. BC beats UMass Lowell, 4-3.  

Early thoughts on the NCAA tourney: How far does the winner go in the Frozen Four? 

Kummins: I don’t think Boston College has quite enough to capture a second consecutive title, but UMass Lowell could certainly make some noise. With a pairing in Manchester or Providence likely, the River Hawks definitely have enough to break through with a trip to the Frozen Four in Pittsburgh this year.

McMahon: Lowell has their best chance ever to make a Frozen Four. You look at their record — 20-3-1 in their last 24 games — and it’s so much about catching fire at the right time. Those BC teams that won national titles always went on runs to end their season.

Seguin: UML, BC and UNH are all in. The former two have the best chance of a deep run and if BU can get in they may be as well. UNH can make some noise if they get back to the defensive juggernaut they once were in the first half. Lowell is deep, while BC has a dangerous trio that can light up any team in the country. Lowell and BC both have the talent to earn a spot in the Frozen Four, but it’s all about matchups. Sometimes it’s the matchups and where teams play, which makes all the difference.

Slate: BC advances to the Frozen Four, but loses in the semifinals.