DURHAM, N.H - Massachusetts-Lowell picked up its fourth straight win with a 3-2 overtime victory over New Hampshire. Derek Arnold was the overtime hero for the River Hawks when he rifled a shot into the top left corner of the UNH net for his first goal of the season.
Lowell controlled play through most of the third period after two late goals in the second period.
“Tonight wasn’t a work of art, but we plugged through the first period and got better as we went along,” Lowell coach Norm Bazin said.
After dropping three of its first four games just two weeks ago, some around the college hockey community wondered where Lowell was heading.
“I think the media and those outside the program were more concerned about the start than we were,” Bazin said. “You never want to start in a hole, but we want to be a great hockey team at the end of the season, and that’s what we are working towards.”
While Lowell has climbed out of its hole, UNH has a ways to go after starting the year 1-5-1.
“It is what it is, and we are in a tough spot,” UNH head coach Dick Umile said. “But we need to keep scratching and clawing to get out of this hole.”
UNH took the first lead of the game midway through the second period on a Kevin Goumas-led rush. Goumas made his way below the left circle and left a pass for Nick Sorkin at the top of the crease. Sorkin could not handle the puck for a shot, but funneled a pass out to Brett Pesce at the point, and Pesce fired a shot that beat Doug Carr five-hole.
Lowell pulled even late in the second on Joe Pendenza’s fourth of the season. On a power play, Adam Chapie danced around Justin Agosta in the slot. As Chapie freed himself from Agosta, Chapie’s stick was tangled behind him. Chapie opted for the soccer move and kicked the puck to Pendenza, who whipped it past Casey DeSmith.
Heading into the power play, Lowell used the television timeout for some extra planning.
“We just went over the routes and ways to recover the puck, because I thought UNH was doing a great job of pressuring us,” Bazin said. “For us, it was nothing more than getting our wind back and moving the puck efficiently.”
Just over a minute later, Lowell took its first lead of the night on a rocket from Michael Folin. Chris Maniccia dished the puck to the top of the slot, where Folin blasted it into the net.
With just 1:38 left in regulation, Lowell’s Josh Holmstrom went to the box for holding. UNH pulled DeSmith for the extra attacker, making it a six-on-four. Matt Willows gathered the puck at the goal line and threw it to the goal mouth, where Grayson Downing poked it under Carr.
“Anytime you score in the last minute it is huge and you get the adrenaline going and the fans get back in the game,” Downing said. “It sucks to have that kind of outcome.”