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03-05-2004, 12:53 AM
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Game Notes - Merrimack @ Umass-Lowell 3/4/2004

Hockey East Rookie of the Month for February Jim Healey (Holyrood, NFD) made a total of 48 saves for Merrimack, stopping 21 shots alone in the final frame to garner the first star of the game, as the UMass Lowell Hockey team came back late to tie Merrimack 3-3 Thursday evening in front of 2,522 fans in the final game of the regular season at Tsongas Arena in Hockey East action.
Both teams vied for control of the contest in the first period, however neither team could light the lamp through the first twenty minutes of play. Goaltenders Healey for Merrimack and John Yaros (Bayside, NY) for UML looked solid between the pipes for their respective clubs, turning away good scoring chances in the first period as the River Hawks outshot the Warriors 12-4 after one.

The second period was the offense’s chance to showcase their talents, as a total of five goals were scored in the second stanza. UMass Lowell opened the scoring at 1:58 when freshman points leader Jason Tejchma (Muskegon, MI) lifted a shot high above Healey from the left side of the slot.

Merrimack made quick work of tying the game, scoring less than twenty seconds after the first River Hawk goal. Rookie Mike Alexiou (Pickering, ONT) broke into the UMass Lowell zone unobstructed along the left, sending a shot along the ice that made its way through Yaros’ leg pads at 2:16.

The Warriors took their first lead of the game at 5:20 with their first power-play goal of the evening as sophomore Nick Pomponio (Livonia, MI) redirected a shot by classmate Rob LaLonde (Williamsville, NY) while in traffic in front of the net.

Sophomore Andrew Martin (Brampton, ONT) knotted the contest at two less than a minute later. With a little help from classmate Bobby Robins (Peshtigo, WI), Martin collected the puck behind the Merrimack net, skating towards the left post and wrapping the puck across the goal line before Healy could react at 6:18.

Sophomore Matt Johnson (Eden Prairie, MN) gave the Warriors back the lead before the end of the second period. After missing an attempt just moments before on the low left side, Johnson collected himself and scooped the puck past Yaros at 17:40, a power-play goal for a 3-2 Merrimack lead after two.

The River Hawks tested Healey early and often in the third period, finally breaking through to tie the contest at three at 12:51. Sophomore points leader Elias Godoy (W. Vancouver, BC) tallied his team-leading 18th goal of the season when he lifted a shot high through traffic from the top of the left face off circle.

Although both teams had quality opportunities in the extra session, neither could net the decisive goal. Healey finished the evening with a total of 48 saves, making double-digit stops in the first three periods, while Yaros finished the evening with a total of 24 stops. The power-play worked to the advantage of the visiting Warriors, as Merrimack went 2-for-3 with the numbers advantage, while UMass Lowell was scoreless on its two opportunities.

Here is the Box Score and such.....

1 2nd 01:58 UML EV Jason Tejchma/8 Bobby Robins/6
2 2nd 02:16 MC EV Mike Alexiou/3 Matt Byrnes/6, Matt Johnson/8
3 2nd 05:20 MC PP Nick Pomponio/3 Rob LaLonde/8, Tim Reidy/9
4 2nd 06:18 UML EV Andrew Martin/9 Bobby Robins/7, Jason Tjchema/12
5 2nd 17:40 MC PP Matt Johnson/3 Eric Pedersen/10, Rob LaLonde/9
6 3rd 12:51 UML EV Elias Godoy/18 Brad King/8, Mark Pandolfo/5

Goals by Period
Team 1 2 3 OT Tot
MC 0 3 0 0 - 3
UML 0 2 1 0 - 3

Shots by Period
Team 1 2 3 OT Tot
MC 4 12 6 5 - 27
UML 12 13 22 4 - 51

Power Play G-Att (Shots)
1st 0-0 (0) 0-1 (2)
2nd 2-2 (5) 0-0 (0)
3rd 0-1 (0) 0-1 (1)
OT 0-0 (0) 0-0 (0)
Total 2-3 (5) 0-2 (3)

Penalties/Minutes by Prd
1st 1/2 0/0
2nd 0/0 2/4
3rd 2/4 2/4
OT 2/4 2/4
Total 5/10 6/12


Merrimack Dec MIN GA EN 1 2 3 OT Svs
35 Jim Healey.......... T 65:00 3 0 12 11 21 4 48

UMass Lowell Dec MIN GA EN 1 2 3 OT Svs
30 John Yaros.......... T 65:00 3 0 4 9 6 5 24

ITECH Three stars:
1. Jim Healey
2. Jason Tejchma
3. Matt Johnson

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