Northland Sports Online

Lowell Stops UMD




The University of Minnesota Duluth men’s hockey team opened the 2019 campaign by dropping a nonconference tilt 3-2 to UMass-Lowell Friday night at AMSOIL Arena.

The 76th season of Bulldog hockey, which opened with a banner unveiling ceremony from last season’s second consecutive NCAA National Championship victory, got off to a slow start as each team skated to a scoreless first period. Senior goaltender Hunter Shepard picked up the first five of his 14 total saves on the night. Halfway through the first period, a tripping infraction gave No.1 UMD (0-1-0) got their first opportunity to push ahead with a power-play but were unsuccessful and only managed one shot during the single man advantage. UMass Lowell (R.V., 3-0-0) outshot the Bulldogs 5-4 in the opening frame.

The game opened up five-and-a-half minutes into the second period when Lowell forward Lucas Condotta wrestled a loose puck past Shepard to put the Bulldogs behind 1-0. Condotta was assisted by fellow forward Chris Shutz. Almost a minute later, the Bulldogs nearly answered the opening goal when junior forward Nick Swaney broke through the River Hawk defense but couldn’t convert on the breakaway. Condotta doubled the River Hawk advantage with five minutes left in the second period when he put away his own rebound right in front of an empty Bulldog net. 49 seconds later, Shutz would intercept a pass deep in the Bulldog zone and beat Shepard to give UMASS Lowell a 3-0 lead which they would carry into the second intermission.

Just under two minutes into the final period, Junior defenseman Scott Perunovich’s wrist shot from the blue line got the Bulldogs back in the game. Perunovich’s goal came as a result of UMD’s second power play of the evening and was assisted from sophomore forward and Noah Cates and junior forward Kobe Roth. With 1:08 remaining and playing with an empty net, Perunovich found Cates in between the faceoff circles and his shot found the back of the River Hawk net, cutting the deficit to one goal.

Perunovich’s first goal of the season was his fifteenth goal for the maroon and gold. He tallied 11 in his rookie campaign and added three more last season … Cates’ late goal was his tenth as a Bulldog after he pitched in nine goals last season … Despite the losing effort, UMD outshot UMASS Lowell 34-17 on the night … the Bulldogs received seven shots from Swaney, six from Roth, and five from sophomore forward Tanner Laderoute.

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