Tonight the minutemen are heading into Boston to take on the Northeastern Huskies in the Matthews for the second time this season.
The first meeting between the teams had Paul Dainton vs. NEU backup goalie Mountain. UMass held a 4-0 lead into the 3rd period, where Northeastern was able to tally one on the board. It was quite an exciting game to be at for a UMass fan. UMass dominated play and held the Huskies to 13 shots on net.
Then, last night, the Huskies seemed to come back with a similar style play that gave UMass the edge during the first meeting. NEU dominated the play and forced turnovers. That, combined with great goaltending by freshman Rawlings, gave the Huskies the shutout. UMass played hard, but couldn’t find the back of the net. UMass outshot Northeastern 31-18, and Dan Meyers, despite playing well, gave up two goals.
Tonight, we finish off the series (tied 1-1-0) with Northeastern. The Matthews Arena proved too much for last year’s UMass team during the playoffs after losing in overtime in the third game of the series. This year started with a win, and UMass is in need of a win for sure tonight.
Some notes on the Matthews Arena: watch for falling food as the students, who sit above the general crowd, tend to get antsy. Also, watch for the horrible starts and stops by the pep band – they just don’t seem to cut off in time. The student section has a plastic horn, in direct violation of NCAA rules, which starts a “GO NU” cheer for them, it gets old fast. And there always seems to be a few megaphones in the student section.
They just renovated the Matthews and it now has a screen in the middle of the ice, which is probably smaller than most flat panels at Best Buy. The seats are also miserable. I found myself needing to stand because if you sit, your knees hit the seat in front of you (even on shorter people). Parking is of course, Boston parking, and the garage next to the Arena is 20$. Find street parking and avoid the hour of traffic after the game gets out just leaving the parking garage.
Please check the UMass Hockey Facebook Page for game updates tonight and Go UMass!
~Ben (Flag Guy)