BOSTON, Mass.—#15 UMass Boston men's hockey capped off one of the greatest weeks in program history with a wild fast-paced 4-2 victory over #5 Norwich University, as they set the program-record for longest unbeaten streak at 12 games Friday night at the Clark Athletic Center.
After watching Norwich erase their 2-0 lead right before the second intermission, UMass Boston used a pair of third-period goals to end a three-game losing streak at the hands of the Cadets.
The Beacons moved to 11-1-2 and 4-1-2 in ECAC East play, while the Cadets dropped their first ECAC East contest of the year (7-1-1) and fell to 10-2-2 on the year.
Sophomore University of Vermont transfer Billy Faust (Alta Loma, Calif.) made a statement in his first collegiate start and first game with the Beacons, by making 34 stops on 36 shots. After playing in two games in relief with the Division I Catamounts as a freshman, Faust made a career-high 34 saves in his first appearance with the Beacons, including 11 or more saves in all three periods.
Jeremy Finger (Orlando, Fla.) recorded a career-high two goals in the victory, including the game-winning goal with 13:32 remaining. The sophomore tied for the game-high with six shots and just barely missed out on the first hat trick of his career.
Junior Gerard McEleney and senior Travis Janke scored within 11 minutes of each other in the second period to erase UMass Boston's 2-0 lead. Junior goaltender Matic Marinsek made 24 saves on 28 shots to fall to 8-2-2 on the year.
Norwich dominated the opening period outshooting UMass Boston 11-5 and peppering Faust from a variety of angles. Despite seeing seven of the first eight shots, Faust seemed unfazed, making a couple of point-blank saves to keep the Cadets off the board.
UMass Boston turned the tide just before the final horn, as Kuhn scored his career-high fifth goal of the season at 19:48. Mark Grinhaus (Scarsdale, N.Y.) won the face-off back to defenseman Dan Cornell (Abington, Mass.) and Cornell ripped a shot from the right point that Kuhn tipped through Marinsek's legs for a 1-0 advantage.
The Beacons added to their lead at 4:55 of the second period when Nathan Milam (Westland, Mich.) sent a feed to Finger out in front ,who one-timed a shot past Marinsek. Frankie DeAugustine (Pittsburgh, Pa.) picked up an assist on the play as well.
Norwich tacked on their first tally of the period at 8:18 when Dean Niezgoda dangled past a Beacons defenseman and laid a pass off for McEleney ,who fired a shot past Faust.
Janke evened the score at 19:56 on a broken play as he stabbed the puck through Faust off a feed from Brian Rowland.
The Beacons recovered the momentum right out of the break, as they created a couple of grade A chances. Norwich caught the first break when Kuhn was sent to the box 3:14 into the period for hooking, but the Beacons' penalty-kill was up to the task, as they allowed just three total shots, with two on net.
Finger made it 3-2 at 6:28 of the period when he forced a turnover just outside the Norwich zone and skated on the near-side, before sending a soft shot through Marinsek's five-hole for a 3-2 lead.
After the goal the game opened up, as both teams created great chances with Marinsek and Faust forced to make several highlight reel saves.
UMass Boston put the game away with 45 seconds remaining after Rowland was sent to the penalty box for hooking. The Beacons top power-play unit converted on just their second opportunity of the day, as MacIntyre beat Marinsek off a pair of strong feeds from Milam and Travis Daniel (North Brunswick, N.J.).
Norwich outshot the Beacons 36-28 for the contest, with UMB finished 1-for-2 on the power-play and the Cadets ending the day 0-for-2.
UMass Boston will look to make it a four-point weekend when they host St. Michael's College Saturday at 4 p.m. in the final game of their six-game homestand.