LOWELL, Mass. — With the first home game of the season, in front of a crowd of 5,619 screaming fans, the Mass.-Lowell River Hawks delivered with a fast paced scoring duel against the Red Raiders of Colgate, prevailing 5-3.
The first period of play was fairly even. The first goal came 4:18 into the period by UMass-Lowell forward Scott Campbell. It was scored from down low over goalie Alex Evins glove. Colgate answered three minutes later with a goal by Christian Long.
With three and a half minutes left in the period, Scott Campbell struck again with his second goal of the game. There was a scrum in front of the hit and with the puck in the air Campbell was able to dexterously snag it with his glove, drop it to the ice and shoot it near side past the goaltender.
In the second period Colgate dominated.
Raider winger Francois Brisebois rushed down left side of the ice, shot at the net, retrieved his own rebound, and shot it over goaltender Nevin Hamiltons glove. Colgates second tally came from a great pass up the ice by defensemen Thomas Larkin, which gave forward Francois Bourdon a breakaway. It was a snapshot from the hash mark that beat Hamilton. Shots in the second period were in Colgates favor, 11-5. UMass-Lowell played an undisciplined period with four penalties.
The River Hawks answered a flat second period with three goals in the third.
Nick Schaus got the momentum going with a goal at 10:48, which tied the game at 3-3.
Colin Wright scored what turned out to be the game winning goal 13:10 into the third period. There was a pileup in front of the net. Evin made the original save but the puck came loose. Wright was able to knock the puck in, but the whistle was also blown.
The goal went under video review and after a tense couple of minutes it was determined that the whistle was blown after the puck was over the line.
I saw the puck between the goalie legs, nobody knew where it was, and I just jammed it in, said Lowell forward Colin Wright of his game-winning goal. David Vallorani scored an insurance marker 33 seconds later.
The special teams for Colgate allowed two power-play goals and had a difficult time getting deep into the zone on their own man advantages.
On the other side of the ice, UMass-Lowell converted on two out of seven power-play chances. The UMass-Lowell penalty killing teams were nearly flawless, not allowing Colgate to set up in the offensive zone and keeping them scoreless through six power plays.
UMass-Lowell head coach Blaise McDonald thought it was a very competitive game, they have some very skilled forwards and the goaltender made some really big saves. We were fortunate to turn the tide in the third period.
Of his teams performance, Colgate coach Don Vaughn said that we were doing a pretty good job until about the last 10 minutes of the game, they are a very good hockey team, we were playing a very good road game.
UMass-Lowell moves on to face the Northeastern Huskies in the Hockey East opener for both teams. Colgate takes on the U.S. National U-18 team at home on Sunday afternoon.