By Kyle Prudhomme | @KylePrudhomme
The opening weekend of New England D3 college hockey season saw 31 games played with some team’s already enjoying successful starts to their respective campaigns.
Assumption College men’s hockey is off to a quick 2-0 start. They have outscored its opponents, 12-2, including an eight-goal performance to close the weekend.
The Greyhounds were not the only team itching to find the net multiple times this past weekend as UMass Boston scored nine goals in its season-opener, while five other teams finished with five or more tallies.
In terms of my first week of predictions, they need some work as I finished 5-5 in my declarations with the tie coming from Endicott College and Norwich University (the two teams skated to a highly-contested 3-3 tie).
Also, regarding my predictions from last week, I am a bit surprised that the Cadets women’s team was knocked off 4-2 by Elmira College in a rematch of last year’s national championship, but I am holding onto the idea that we will get round three later this season.
I can say that I was spot on with Curry College as the Colonels began their season by winning the Buffalo State Tournament. In the opening round of last week’s two-day tournament, Vilhelm Peltonen netted his first collegiate marker in a 2-2 tie with Nazareth College before the Purple and White scored an exciting 3-2 win over Buffalo State, thanks to a game-winning strike from Viktor Jansson.
One thing I did notice from this past weekend was various men’s teams received multiple points (goals or assists), beginning with Mike Moran, who located the back of the net twice for Worcester State against Becker College (his final goal happened to be the difference in a 3-2 win).
Jack Kelly logged two goals for Suffolk University in a 7-0 rout of Franklin Pierce, while Justin Collins registered two goals and Aaron Clancy dished out three assists in Westfield State’s 6-3 triumph against Western New England.
On Saturday, Nick Rosa’s two goal-outing helped Babson College double up Saint Anselm, 4-2.
Of course, there were more multi-point skaters from this past weekend, but these were a few names that caught my attention.
Let’s highlight some women’s hockey from this past weekend, beginning with Franklin Pierceearning its 100th win in program history.
On Friday, the Ravens knocked off Plymouth State, 2-0, behind 24 saves from Kelly Turney before Nicole Amato’s hat-trick powered the team to a 6-1 win against Becker. The five-goal win over the Hawks lifted the Ravens to their 100th win in program history – congrats, everyone!
UMass Boston interim head coach Dom Lozzi picked up her first career win behind the bench as returners Jane Morrisette and Katie Leffler finished with two goals and two assists, respectively, in a 5-2 win over Stevenson.
Prior to her team’s three-goal win over the Mustangs, Lozzi praised her unit for being prepared for a successful first weekend. She also gave a nod to the program’s former coach Lindsay Berman, too.
“The last three years, coach Berman did an amazing job with them,” said Lozzi. “We are very experienced up front and they are a really great group of leaders. The fact this whole fall has not felt like much of a transition is a testament to that leadership.”
Suffolk University’s women’s hockey team competed in its first two contests in program history against Nichols College, and although the outcomes were not ideal, the effort from a freshmen filled team is certainly commendable.
Against Nichols last Friday, Haley Poloskey netted a pair of goals, including the program’s first goal at 11:32 in the opening frame. Shana Cote and Jesse Kennedy each recorded one assist in the setback, while Kristen Caporusso turned aside 27 of 32 shots.
On Saturday, Payton Dockus potted the first goal for the team’s first lead of the series before Nichols rallied to score a 2-1, thanks to a power play goal late in the third period by Jordyn McGuire.
Prior to the team’s second game of the season, Suffolk President Marisa Kelly dropped a ceremonial puck to celebrate the start of women’s ice hockey.
Suffolk coach Taylor Wasylk knows her team will endure some ups and downs this season, but is confident that the Rams’ effort and dedication will help them become the program they aspire to be down the road.
“If we show up and play our game then I think we can match up with any team on our schedule,” said Wasylk. “It is all about right now. We are a very, very young team so it is about maturing a little bit, we got a little bit of growing up to do on the ice.”
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