BOSTON – Paul Thompson (Derry, N.H.; 2g) and Stevie Moses (Leominster, Mass.; 2g, 1a) each scored a pair of goals to lead five players with multi-point efforts to lift the ninth-ranked University of New Hampshire men's hockey team to Saturday night's 6-3 win over Northeastern University in Hockey East action at Matthews Arena.
UNH, which extends its unbeaten streak to four-games (2-0-2), improves to 19-7-6, 17-4-4 in Hockey East. Northeastern falls to 11-13-8, 9-9-7 in league play. New Hampshire ensures a top-three finish in the league standing and can clinch the regular season championship with a win over Boston College next weekend. The 'Cats hold a one-point lead over the Eagles heading into the final weekend of the regular season.
New Hampshire controlled play in the opening frame, but did not break the scoreless deadlock until the final minutes of the period. Phil DeSimone (East Amherst, N.Y.) won a faceoff back to Mike Sislo (Superior, Wis.; 1g, 1a) in the slot for a one-timer that Sislo roofed over netminder Chris Rawlings stickside to make it 1-0 at 19:31 of the period. UNH held a 14-7 shot advantage in the period.
UNH extended its lead to 2-0 as Moses made an initial shot from the slot that bounced out to a follow up shot for Mike Borisenok (Watervliet, N.Y.; 1g, 1a) that was also saved, but caromed out to an open Moses, who slide the puck an open far side of the net at 9:53. Kevin Goumas (Lake Worth, Fla.; 3a) also assisted on the goal. The Huskies cut into lead as Luke Eibler scored on a one-timer from the right point. Steve Silva won the faceoff back to Eibler to setup the tally at 11:38 of the second. The 'Cats regained its two-goal advantage as Thompson scored a 4-on-4 goal at 13:17 of the second. Northeastern outshot UNH 18-11 in the period.
New Hampshire made it 4-1 was Thompson scored a 5-on-3 goal from the left slot with assists from Blake Kessel (Verona, Wis.) and Brett Kostolansky (Denver, Colo.) at 35 seconds of the third. UNH took a 5-1 lead as Borisenok scored from the center slot with assists from Moses and Goumas at 5:51. The Huskies answered with a pair of goals just over a minute apart at 12:06 and 13:23 of the third. The first was an even-strength goal by Cody Ferriero with assists from Jamie Oleksiak and Drew Daniels. New Hampshire committed a penalty and just two seconds later the Huskies scored a power play goal off a faceoff as Wade MacLeod scored on a one-timer with assists from Tyler McNeely, who won the draw. UNH added an insurance tally as Moses potted his second of the night with assist from Goumas, who posted a career-high three assists. The 'Cats held a 13-11 shot advantage in the frame for a 38-36 edge in the contest.
Junior netminder Matt Di Girolamo (Ambler, Pa.) turned aside 33 shots, including 17 in the second period and improves to 19-7-6. Chris Rawlings stopped 26-of-31 shots in 45:51 of play before being lifted in favor of Clay Witt, who turned aside all six shots he faces in 13:37 of action.
UNH was 1-4 on the power play, while NU was 1-6 in its extra-skater opportunities.
UNH returns to action March 4-5 for a home-and-home series with No. 2 Boston College. The teams play Friday night (7:30 p.m.; coverage begins at 7 p.m.) in Chestnut Hill live on NESNplus (check your local listings) and return home for the regular-season finale. For more information about UNH hockey including tickets to the upcoming Hockey East quarterfinals visit UNHWildcats.com.