Reaction: UMass hockey falls to Maine in OT, 6-5

Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

The Massachusetts hockey team started a two-game weekend set at Maine with a 6-5 overtime loss Friday night. Sophomore forward Brian Morgan scored the decisive goal 53 seconds into the extra period to hand the Minutemen their second straight loss.

Erasing deficits
After two opening period goals and another score in the second minute of the second period for Maine, UMass (2-4-0, 1-3-01 Hockey East) found itself in early trouble trailing 3-0. However, the Minutemen quickly erased the deficit with two goals from Dennis Kravchenko and another from Ray Pigozzi to even the score at 3-3 with less than five minutes to play in the second period. The deadlock wouldn’t last into intermission, as Devin Shore’s goal 20 seconds before the break regained Maine’s lead. After the Black Bears extended their advantage to two goals, UMass once again made a comeback, tying the game at five goals apiece with scores by Patrick Lee and Mike Busillo. Busillo’s goal came with less than two minutes left in the final period, allowing the Minutemen to extend the game into overtime.

Breakout performance
Kravchenko, a freshman, impressed in UMass’ preseason exhibition game against Dalhousie, scoring two goals while playing on the top line alongside senior captain Troy Power and redshirt sophomore Frank Vatrano. However, since the regular season started Kravchenko remained relatively quiet heading into Friday’s matchup with just two assists in five games. But Friday’s two-goal performance may serve as a launching pad for the California native. His first collegiate goal came with the Minutemen trailing 2-0 in the 13th minute of the second period. Just two minutes later, Kravchenko converted on his second goal off of an assist from Oleg Yevenko. Kravchenko would also pick up an assist on Lee’s score in the third period for his third point of the day.

Dill struggles
Freshman Henry Dill, who started his fourth straight game on Friday gave up a career-high six goals against Maine. Dill made 30 saves in the loss but couldn’t capitalize on last weekend’s success where he allowed five total goals against Northeastern and Boston College, which earned him Hockey East freshman of the week honors.

Next up
The Minutemen will play one more game in Orono, Maine Saturday night before returning to the Mullins Center for a home game against American International College on Nov. 7. Saturday’s game will begin at 7 p.m.

Anthony Chiusano can be reached at achiusano@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @a_chiusano24.

Rotation Analysis: UMass vs. American International College

Photo by Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

Photo by Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

Massachusetts men’s basketball coach Derek Kellogg noted in advance of Thursday’s 120-71 victory over American International College that he was curious to see which combination of players would work.

After 40 minutes of play, he now has some answers. The Daily Collegian tracked each lineup combination and the accompanying +/- rating. The combinations are as follows, with the top five lineup combinations ranked in order of success. The initial starting lineup was Trey Davis, Derrick Gordon, Seth Berger, Maxie Esho and Cady Lalanne.

1. C.J. Anderson, Donte Clark, Demetrius Dyson, Seth Berger, Tyler Bergantino: +17 (5:27 time played together) 

2. Jabarie Hinds, Donte Clark, Demetrius Dyson, Zach Coleman, Tyler Bergantino: +11 (2:36 time played)

3. Trey Davis, Derrick Gordon, Demetrius Dyson, Maxie Esho, Cady Lalanne: +11 (3:03 time played) 

4. C.J. Anderson, Derrick Gordon, Demetrius Dyson, Seth Berger, Zach Coleman: +6 (2:35 time played) 

5. Trey Davis, Donte Clark, Demetrius Dyson, Zach Coleman, Tyler Bergantino: +3 (1:20 time played) 

The worst grouping was a combination of C.J. Anderson, Donte Clark, Seth Berger, Zach Turcotte and Mike Wojewodzic, which produced a -9 rating in 5:01 of play. It came at the very end of the game and both Turcotte and Wojewodzic are walk on players that primarily practice with the team.

With the addition of Hinds, UMass has considered the idea of playing a three-guard lineup at times with Hinds, Davis and Gordon. The Minutemen debuted that lineup with Maxie Esho and Cady Lalanne for 2:42 of the game and produced a +1 rating.

UMass coach Derek Kellogg had this to say about that particular lineup.

“What’s been tough is, at practice, I’ve got Trey running one team and Jabarie with the other team,” Kellogg said.

“So to get them together (has been difficult). But now that I’ve seen C.J. run the point a little bit, we might be able to experiment with that some. I think, at some point, that could be one of our best lineups because of the way Trey can handle and shoot and the way (Jabarie) gets in the paint. But I do like having Jabarie coming off the bench because his energy is great. The other team starts getting a little tired and then here he comes. We’ll see. I think everything’s kind of up in the air right now. I wanted to explore a little bit more of those guys playing together, but it didn’t happen because everyone was playing well.”

Andrew Cyr can be reached at arcyr@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @Andrew_Cyr 

Derek Kellogg: “I think we’re just scratching the surface with this team”

Taylor C. Snow/ Daily Collegian

Taylor C. Snow/ Daily Collegian

Following Thursday’s 120-71 trampling of American International College in an exhibition affair, Massachusetts men’s basketball coach Derek Kellogg pinpointed a variety of performances that he was pleased with.

Kellogg noted the team played an up-tempo style, observed he received a number of strong performances from throughout the roster and said he was excited to get back to practice to continue working with the team. Yet Kellogg admitted that he didn’t walk away from the tuneup with a clearer vision than he did entering the game.

“I’m probably as confused with playing time and who is going to do what as I was before the game,” Kellogg said with a laugh. “But that’s probably a good problem to have.”

Seven different UMass players scored in double-figures. Among them, sophomore Demetrius Dyson and freshman Donte Clark led the Minutemen with 17 points each. Trey Davis chipped in 16, Zach Coleman scored 13 and Cady Lalanne scored 14 points and hauled in 11 rebounds in just 12 minutes of play.

But despite an onslaught of strong offensive performances, Kellogg did note the team began to play its way into more defined roles on its own as the game progressed.

“We hadn’t really defined roles to a certain extent, but I thought they defined them on their own a little bit,” Kellogg said. “I think we got a lot of room to improve, which I do like. I think we’re just scratching the surface with this team.”

Kellogg featured a starting lineup of Davis, Derrick Gordon, Seth Berger, Maxie Esho and Lalanne. But the intrigue surrounded how he would divvy up minutes to his bench players, something that’s an ongoing evaluation for the coaching staff.

On Thursday, Kellogg placed guard Jabarie Hinds in the sixth-man role and Hinds delivered. He scored 10 points in 13 minutes of play, added seven assists and showcased a unique level of speed, causing Kellogg to say his energy off the bench was “great.”

“I felt good,” Hinds said. “I just didn’t want to rush anything. I just wanted to push the ball, get easy buckets for my teammates and try to make layups and play good defense.”

Dyson also stood out, especially in the second half. His 17 points came on 5-of-7 shooting, including 3-of-5 from beyond-the-arc. After struggling to hit 3-pointers in practice, the shooting display was a welcoming sign for Kellogg.

“I’ve been counting on him and waiting for him,” Kellogg said. “It was nice to see him make shots because we need a couple shot makers on this team … we’re looking for that next guy and the guy after that to make open 3s or shots that can break a game open.”

The Minutemen were 41-of-74 from the floor (55 percent) and shot 11-of-25 (44 percent) on 3-pointers.

More tidbits…

  • Freshman C.J. Anderson finished with eight points, eight assists and seven rebounds in 22 minutes. He played point guard, shooting guard and small forward throughout the game.

“We’re up 40, 50 points and he’s still playing like we’re down 20 (points),” Kellogg said. “He’s out there hawking the ball, he’s trying to dive for loose balls, he’s out there pressure full court by himself. I think he’s got a good mentality for how the game is supposed to play…that’s the kind of stuffing the stat sheet for a freshman who we’re trying to figure out position and stuff like that.”

  • Redshirt freshman Zach Coleman also had a solid game, hitting multiple mid-range jump shots and throwing down a vicious right-handed dunk. Kellogg said after the game that Coleman injured his knee, but the severity is unknown.

“Zach’s a good basketball player,” Kellogg said. “He knows how to play and he’s done some good things. At times, (the jumper) is not a great shot for him or us. But he had it going a little bit and guys were throwing it in, so I felt at that point, that was good. He’s got a good mid-range game and he knows how to play it.”

  • UMass and AIC experimented with a 30-second shot clock, something Kellogg said he was a big proponent of.

Mark Chiarelli can be reached at mchiarel@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @Mark_Chiarelli

Exhibition observations: UMass tops AIC 120-71

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Photo by Cade Belisle/Daily Collegian

The Massachusetts men’s basketball team hosted American International in an exhibition matchup Thursday, and had little difficulty rolling to a 120-71 victory.

UMass played at a quick pace offensively and pulled away late in the first half, heading into halftime with a 52-28 lead. UMass started Trey Davis, Derrick Gordon, Seth Berger, Maxie Esho and Cady Lalanne but rotated through its entire roster throughout the game. No starter played more than 19 minutes, outside of Berger, who finished with 26.

Fans caught a glimpse of a number of new players and presumably walked away smiling. Jabarie Hinds, Zach Coleman, Donte Clark and C.J. Anderson all played significant minutes and shined on the offensive end. Both observations and statistics are to follow…

PERFORMANCES

STARTERS

Trey Davis: 16 points, 4 assists, 1 steal. 19 minutes.

Derrick Gordon: 5 points, 3 assists, 2 blocks, 1 steal, 16 minutes.

Seth Berger: 6 points, 6 rebounds. 26 minutes.

Maxie Esho: 11 points, 3 rebounds, 1 steal, 16 minutes.

Cady Lalanne: 14 points, 11 rebounds, 4 blocks, 12 minutes.

————————

Jabarie Hinds: 10 points, 7 assists, 13 minutes.

Zach Coleman: 13 points, 4 rebounds. 12 minutes.

Demetrius Dyson: 17 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals. 21 minutes.

Donte Clark: 17 points, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, 21 minutes.

Tyler Bergantino: 2 points, 4 rebounds, 3 blocks, 13 minutes.

C.J. Anderson: 8 points, 8 assists, 7 rebounds, 22 minutes.

Mike Wojewodzic: 1 point, 5 minutes.

Zach Turcotte: 2 rebounds, 5 minutes.

OBSERVATIONS

  • Starting spot up for grabs: Seth Berger was the fifth starter for UMass, but Kellogg cycled through options at the small forward position. Berger and freshman C.J. Anderson saw the most time with Davis, Gordon, Esho and Lalanne and both played well in spurts. Berger showed up more on the defensive end, as his reach (he’s 6-foot-7) disrupted passing lanes. Anderson didn’t look out of place running with the veterans and delivered a crisp no-look pass to Coleman, who finished with a tomahawk dunk. Dyson played with the starters to begin the second half and was a part of a UMass offensive explosion which I’ll touch on shortly.
  • Hinds excels in sixth man role: Last season, UMass counted on Davis and Esho to provide energy off the bench. But with both players sliding into the starting lineup, Kellogg’s spent most of October evaluating where production would come from on the bench. On Thursday, the ringleader was Hinds. He showcased a dizzying display of speed and penetrated into the paint with ease. He played with both the starters and the second unit and finished the first half with 10 points and four assists in nine minutes of play.

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Dill named Hockey East rookie of the week

Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

After starting both games over the weekend – including a 3-2 win over Northeastern Friday night – Massachusetts goaltender Henry Dill was named Hockey East rookie of the week.

Dill, a freshman from Columbus, Ohio, started both games for the Minutemen (2-3, 1-2 HE), who split a weekend series in Boston. Dill backstopped UMass in the Friday win, and recorded 42 saves on the night. On Saturday, the Minutemen fell to No. 6 Boston College, but Dill finished with a respectable 27 saves, and only allowed three goals. On the weekend, Dill posted a save percentage of .932.

The win against Northeastern was the second of Dill’s career, out of just three total starts. His performance drew praise from UMass coach John Micheletto.

“From a coaching standpoint, seeing a freshman respond to a two-game weekend, not knowing how it would work out for him mentally or physically, is really encouraging,” Micheletto said. “He certainly proved that he can play two games in a weekend and perform at a high level against really strong competition.”

While Micheletto has not announced who will start in goal against Maine next weekend, it would be a surprise if Dill didn’t make an appearance in at least one game of the weekend series.

By ross gienieczko Posted in Misc.

UMass hockey downs Northeastern 3-2

Photo by Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

Photo by Alec Zabrecky/Daily Collegian

With the score tied at two in the third period, it was senior forward Emerson Auvenshine who scored the game-winning goal to give the Massachusetts hockey team a vital 3-2 road victory over conference opponent Northeastern on Friday night.

Auvenshine gave the Minutemen (2-3, 1-1 Hockey East) the lead for good after receiving a pass from senior Zach LaRue which he slapped into the back of the net with 11:09 left in the final period.

Despite falling behind 1-0 after a Torin Snydeman goal in the opening 20 minutes, it was LaRue who answered for UMass just two minutes, 23 seconds later on assists from freshman Jake Horton and senior Oleg Yevenko.

After knotting the score up at one, a powerplay goal from sophomore Ray Pigozzi made it 2-1 in favor of UMass with six minutes left in the first period. The lead for the Minutemen didn’t last long, with the Huskies answering 1:54 later to tie things up at two courtesy of a Dalen Hedges goal.

Also earning assists for the Minutemen in the contest were sophomore defender Marc Hetnik and redshirt senior forward Steven Guzzo.

Just one week after receiving his first collegiate win as a UMass goalie against Michigan State, freshman Henry Dill stood on his head once again, making 42 saves in the winning effort.

Dill was given the start ahead of senior goaltender Steve Mastalerz, and showed his ability while keeping Northeastern from taking the lead, making several key saves to preserve the win.

In the victory for the Minutemen, it was the special teams unit that stood tall. In seven power play opportunities for Northeastern, the Minutemen did not allow a goal, improving to 1-16 on the penalty kill this season. UMass was able to kill off two penalties in the final 20 minutes, including a crucial one with seven minutes, 12 seconds left in the game.

The Minutemen will have to make a quick turnaround, as they travel to Chestnut Hill tomorrow night to take on No.6 Boston College.

Jason Kates can be reached at jkates@umass.edu 

UMass announces Derek Kellogg’s contract extension

Collegian file photo by Cade Belisle

Collegian file photo by Cade Belisle

Massachusetts men’s basketball coach Derek Kellogg’s recent contract extension will make him the highest paid Massachusetts state employee, as he will make $994,500 per year prior to any contract bonuses.

UMass released the details of his extension, which was previously reported last week, in a press release Friday.

According to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, Kellogg is guaranteed to make an annual salary of $994,500 through 2018-19, but that amount could increase if he reaches certain performance-based incentives within his contract. The contract could also span an additional two years if Kellogg earns a satisfactory grade or higher based on performance reviews conducted after the 2014-15 and the 2015-16 season.

“I’d like to thank President Robert Caret, Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy and our Director of Athletics John McCutcheon for the support they have given not only myself, but the program overall, during the past years,” Kellogg said in the release. “I am excited to lead this program into the future. Our players have represented this University in a first-class manner and I am excited for where we are heading.”

Kellogg’s posted a 109-85 overall record in seven seasons since taking over as head coach at UMass. He led the Minutemen to its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 16 years a season ago.

Mark Chiarelli can be reached at mchiarel@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @Mark_Chiarelli