Audio | Video | Game Notes | Stats: Friday | Saturday
DURHAM, N.H. --The ninth-ranked University of New Hampshire men's ice hockey team concludes the regular season with a two game road series at No. 7 Vermont. The Wildcats and Catamounts are tied for third place entering the final weekend of the regular season. The teams will square off Friday & Saturday March 6-7 at 7 p.m. at the Gutterson Fieldhouse in Burlington, Vt. Both games can be heard on the Wildcat Sports Network with live audio, live stats and live video available online through www.unhwildcats.com.
SCOUTING THE CATAMOUNTS: No. 7/7 Vermont enters this weekend 19-8-5 overall in a third-place tie in Hockey East with UNH. Both teams have matching 14-7-4 records in Hockey East. After struggling through a 1-2-2 clip with Mass-Lowell and Merrimack, the Catamounts rallied last weekend with a pair of one-goal wins at Maine. Vermont has spent much of the season in the top 10 nationally and are currently tied for fifth with Northeastern in the most recent PairWise Ratings. UVM is led offensively by junior Viktor Stalberg, who has 20 goals and 16 assists for 36 points, while Peter Lenes has 28 points (13g, 15a). Freshman Rob Madore has been superb in net for Vermont posting a 12-6-4 record with a .923 save percentage and a 2.06 GAA. Madore is also the reigning Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts against Maine.
SERIES HISTORY VS. VERMONT: The Wildcats own the advantage in the all-time series vs. Vermont at 65-15-3 in 83 all-time meetings dating back to Dec. 14, 1963. UNH is 7-1-2 against the Catamounts since they became a member of Hockey East during the 2005-06 season. Vermont’s lone win snapped a 12-game unbeaten streak on the final game of the regular season in 2007-08. In this year’s only meeting UNH upended the sixth-ranked Catamounts 3-2 as Blake Kessel scored the game-winner on the power play with just over two minutes remaining in the third. UNH owns a 30-9-1 all-time record vs. the Catamounts at Gutterson Field House and Coach Umile in his 16-year coaching career has registered a 21-5-2 mark against Vermont in 28 meetings. Overall, the Wildcats are 15-2-2 in the last 19 meetings with Vermont. Jerry Pollastrone is the leading active scorer against Vermont with nine points (1g, 8a) in 10 games, while Brian Foster is 1-0-0 in two all-time appearances against UVM.
TWO FOR THREE: The Wildcats and Vermont will square off a pair of times next weekend in Burlington with third place on the line. UNH needs just two points out of the weekend to secure a third place finish, either way it will play host to either Mass-Lowell or Boston College.
‘CATS UNBEATEN IN LAST SIX, THIRD LONGEST ACTIVE STREAK: UNH is unbeaten in its last six games (5-0-1), only two teams in the country have longer streaks than the Wildcats.
Current Unbeaten Streak: W-L-T Games
Boston University 11- 0- 3 14
North Dakota 6- 0- 1 7
New Hampshire 5- 0- 1 6
Notre Dame 6- 0- 0 6
St. Lawrence 5- 0- 1 6
Harvard 4- 0- 2 6
Robert Morris 3- 0- 3 6
FOSTER GARNERS HOCKEY EAST GOALIE OF THE MONTH, FEBRUARY: Brian Foster was selected ITECH Hockey East Goalie of the Month for February. Foster went 6-1-1 in the month and allowed two goals or less in six of eight games including ending the month with his third shutout of the season, fifth of his career. Foster’s lone loss of the month came as Maine captured a 1-0 win on Feb. 7 on a short-handed one-on-none goal. Foster had 20+ saves in all eight games including a pair of 30+ save performances. Foster ended the month by winning his final five games and was unbeaten in the last six games. He ended the month with 26 saves in a 1-0 shutout win of Merrimack on Feb. 28. Overall, he posted a 1.86 goals against average and a .932 save percentage.
WINNING THE CLOSE ONES: The Wildcats are 10-3-0 in one-goal games including winning three of the last four by one goal and the fourth a two-goal win thanks in part to an empty net goal.
WILDCATS SECURE 13th-STRAIGHT HOME-ICE ADVANTAGE: UNH secured home ice for a league-best 13th-straight season. The last time UNH traveled for the quarterfinals was the 1995-96 season when the Wildcats lost two games to none at Maine.
BALANCED WINNING FOR THE SECOND-STRAIGHT YEAR: With a win over Merrimack on Friday night, UNH captured a win over every league foe for the second-straight season.
‘CATS CONTINUE FEBRUARY SUCCESS: UNH finished the month 5-1-1 and went unbeaten in February last season at 7-0-1 for the first time in over 80 years. February also marks the third-consecutive month the Wildcats have gone .500 or better.
SCORING FIRST IN SIX STRAIGHT: UNH is 5-0-1 in its last six games and have scored the first goal of the game in all six.
WILDCATS STREAKING: UNH has won five straight and is 5-0-1 in the last six. It marks the first five-game winning streak since Jan. 25 through Feb. 9, 2008.
WILDCATS POTENTIAL OPPONENTS IN QUARTERFINALS: While UNH and Vermont are jockeying for the third and fourth position in Hockey East, its potential quarterfinals foes are also fighting over the fifth and sixth spots in the post season. Mass-Lowell enters the weekend with a one point lead over sixth-place Boston College.
Team Current Points UNH’s record against
5. Mass.-Lowell 26 pts. 2-1-0
This weekend Fri. vs. Maine Sat. vs. Maine
6. Boston College 25 points 2-1-0
This weekend Fri. at Northeastern Sat. vs. Northeastern
ON THE ROAD LATELY: UNH struggled on the road early going 0-5-2 in its first seven road games, since that time they are 5-1-1 in its last seven, including winning three straight.
GETTING OUT TO AN EARLY LEAD: UNH has benefitted from getting an early lead. The Wildcats are 13-0-3 when leading after two and 11-1-3 with a lead after the first period.
POLLASTRONE APPROACHING 100: With 92 points, senior forward Jerry Pollastrone is looking to become the 67th member of the Wildcat century club. Last season, Mike Radja and Matt Fornataro joined the prestigious list.