LOWELL, Mass. — Despite a late, game-tying goal from junior forward Scott Wilson – and what appeared to be an overtime game-winner from Josh Holmstrom that was reviewed and eventually waved off – Massachusetts-Lowell and McGill played to a 3-3 stalemate at the Tsongas Center on Saturday night.
For Lowell, the game marked the club’s only live-action competition before next Friday’s season-opener against Sacred Heart.
The Redmen will continue their series of exhibition games tomorrow at Merrimack.
“I thought we had some good moments,” said Lowell coach Norm Bazin. “[But] there’s plenty of stuff we can improve on.”
The River Hawks thought they had the game toward the end of overtime when Holmstrom took a feed in the slot on the rush and jammed the puck past McGill netminder Andrew Flemming. However, after a short review, it was determined that a Lowell player had collided and interfered with the goalie.
“We had a little bit of a break there, turned it into a three-on-two into their zone,” said Holmstrom. “Joey [Pendenza] made a great pass to me and [A.J. White] went in hard to the net. I didn’t see if he was tripped up there or if he just lost an edge, but they said that he interfered with the goalie. But there were still a lot of good things there.”
While UML put up most of the pressure early on, it was the Redmen who were able to get on the board first on a goal from Patrick Delisle-Houde.
After a broken play in the Lowell end, Carl Gelinas was able to get the puck to the front of the net where Delisle-Houde one-timed it past River Hawks’ goalie Doug Carr.
McGill’s lead was short-lived.
Playing his first game ever in a Lowell uniform, freshman Evan Campbell evened the score at 1-1 just 24 seconds after the ice-breaker on a rebound in front of the net.
“I was just driving the net there,” said Campbell. “[Christian] Folin threw it on net and I just took a swipe at it. It just kind of trickled in.”
After trading a pair of goals, the Redmen regained their lead late in the third when Guillaume Langeliere-Parent beat Connor Hellebuyck on a two-on-one wrist shot.
“I liked the way we played tonight,” McGill coach Kelly Nobes said. “I thought we battled hard for 60 minutes. All in all, I thought it was a good game with good pace.”
With less than five minutes left in regulation, the River Hawks went to the power play. Wilson took the puck at the point and wound up for a hard slap shot through a screen that beat Flemming and leveled the tally at 3-3.
“It is that time of the year,” said Bazin. “There’s very little practice, very little structure, and you just want to see how guys react to those situations, and I thought that overall, I was pleased.”
Saturday’s contest was the fifth preseason game for the Redmen and the first for Mass.-Lowell, who dressed an above-standard 23 skaters and two goalies.