action:article | category:SPORTS22 | adString:SPORTS22 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » College Sports

October 11. 2012 8:44PM

History awaits UNH's Umile


UNH men’s hockey coach Dick Umile watches practice Tuesday at the Whittemore Center in Durham. The longtime Wildcats bench boss goes into tonight’s season opener against St. Cloud State with 499 career wins. (MARK BOLTON/Union Leader)

DURHAM — Dick Umile’s first win as the University of New Hampshire men’s hockey coach came in Burlington, Vt., on Oct. 26, 1990.

His most recent milestone victories came on the road, too.

He and the Wildcats will attempt to get the latest career accomplishment out of the way tonight at home in their season opener against St. Cloud State at the Whittemore Center at 7:30 p.m.

Umile has 499 wins as head coach, all at UNH, and is about to join an elite group. Only five active coaches have collected 500 wins.

At least some of his players have gotten wind of the mark.

“We’ve got to make sure we grab that puck,” said junior defenseman Justin Agosta. “Hopefully, at the end of the first game on Friday night.”

UNH and St. Cloud State meet again on Saturday night at 7.

Umile is concerned about No. 500 only because he wants No. 1 for this year.

He and his team have focused on getting off to a good start to the season. A rough start last year led to a rare under-.500 season for the Wildcats.

They finished 15-19-3 overall and 11-14-2 in Hockey East and had their streak of consecutive NCAA tournament appearances snapped at 10.

The Wildcats lost their opener at Boston University, 5-0, and their next game at Northeastern, 4-0, and fell at home to Boston College, 5-1.

They then went to St. Cloud and lost 7-5 the first night before managing a 3-3 tie the next.

“It’s tough to get out of the hole when you fall behind,” Umile said.

Casey DeSmith, the sophomore out of Rochester, will likely get the start in goal tonight. He helped UNH rally in the second half last year finished with a .926 save percentage and 2.33 goals against average.

The defense, led by seniors Connor Hardowa and Brett Kostolansky, is more experienced and should be better from the start of the season, Umile said.

Dalton Speelman, who shattered his left wrist and hand during a game against Lowell in November, returns to the lineup and will start out on a top line with sophomore center Grayson Downing and junior Nick Sorkin.

Sorkin had nine goals and 26 assists for 35 points and was tied with Stevie Moses last season for the team lead in scoring. Downing was one of only two Wildcats, along with Moses, to hit double figures in goals at 10-13-23.

Speelman received a medical redshirt and will be a junior again. He had three goals and three assists last year before being hurt in the 11th game of the season.

Speelman had one of the goals in a 5-2 exhibition win over St. Francis Xavier last week.

“It was a great transition play, a great pass by Downing,” Umile said. “It was good to see. It’s good to have him back in the lineup.”

Agosta had three assists in the exhibition game and sophomore defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk had a pair of power play goals.

One of the other lines will likely have senior Austin Block, senior Greg Burke and junior Kevin Goumas skating together and Umile indicated another could have sophomore Casey Thrush skating with junior Jeff Silengo and senior John Henrion.

St. Cloud State finished 17-17-5 last season and features senior forward Ben Hanowski, who led the Huskies with 23 goals last season.


  • With revenues topping $9B and amid constant scandals, should the NFL lose its tax exempt status?
  • Yes
  • 91%
  • No
  • 9%
  • Total Votes: 1361
 NH Sports Angle more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Speedway Motorsports, Inc. driving fan experience initiatives, partners with Sporting Innovations

Undefeated Middleweight Antoine Douglas to take on Tilton's Jose Medina on October 24

UNH's Thompson takes leave of absence

Toronto Maple Leafs James van Riemsdyk still has plenty of room to grow after breakout season

Keene State hoops program mourns death of former teammate killed on duty

Keene State College alumnus killed in NYPD van crash on way to providing security for climate change march

Grantland.com: 15 Questions for San Antonio's Matt Bonner

Former KSC basketball player killed months after joining NYC police in patrol van crash

Speed and thrills at Kingston hydroplane races

NHMS, Miller Lite extend deal for another 3 years

NASCAR: Who the Vegas wise guys like heading into Loudon

Goalie Danny Tirone to enroll at UNH for second semester after star's suspension for domestic violence

'Smoke' blows into New Hampshire with the law in his rear-view mirror

Man found unconscious at Winchester Speedpark Saturday

Too young to drive, but old enough for NHMS

Police examine speed, possible horseplay in golf cart fatality

Mass. man, 27, dies in golf cart accident at The Links at Outlook

Hanover's Sarah Groff competes in the women's triathlon final during the 2012 London Olympic Games.

Hanover Olympian in spotlight at Las Vegas Super Sprint

FHL makes it official, team planned for Berlin will play in North Adams, Mass. instead

Can NH soccer star Charlie Davies make a comeback?

Inside NIKEs secret sports lab; born in Exeter, now located in Oregon.

Concord Monitor decries gender pay gap in professional tennis

FHL franchise slated for Berlin may go to North Adams, Mass. instead

Eagles' Kelly says he learned his offense by studying defense while at UNH

Former Concord area youth baseball coach sentenced to 30 more years in prison

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

    SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

    ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!