action:article | category:SPORTS07 | adString:SPORTS07 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » Hockey

November 18. 2012 7:55PM

UNH skates to another stingy win, edging B.U., 3-1

BOSTON - New Hampshire forward Kevin Goumas admitted the Wildcats' confidence level is sky high.

But it's not at the point where the players need to be measured for larger baseball caps.

"We're definitely feeling confident but we can't let that get to us," Goumas said Sunday after No. 5 UNH beat No. 11 Boston University, 3-1, in a Hockey East game. "We've got a long road stretch coming up.

"We can't let the standings get to us. We've just got to keep doing our thing."

UNH's "thing" has been playing solid defense.

The Wildcats (8-1-1, 6-1-1) have allowed only 12 goals in their 10 games and continue to lead the nation in team defense with a 1.20 goals-against average.

Sunday, UNH broke the school record for consecutive scoreless minutes. It now stands at 204 minutes and 51 seconds.

UNH's defense was particularly effective against BU (6-4-0, 5-3-0) for several reasons:

.UNH killed off six of seven BU power plays.

.The Wildcats' defense blocked 20 shots.

.White-hot goalie Casey DeSmith made 45 saves and extended his school-record scoreless streak to 203 minutes and 32 seconds before he allowed a goal by Danny O'Regan (on a power play) at 4:40 of the second period.

UNH coach Dick Umile was pleased with his team's penalty kill.

"I thought our penalty kill was excellent and it needed to be, especially during the second period (when BU had five power plays)," he said. "We had a couple of 5-on-3s against us and had to kill a lot of penalties.

"I was pleased with the way the team responded."

Senior defenseman Connor Hardowa was part of this team that set a school record scoreless streak.

"I think a lot of people wouldn't have known that but we just keep winning and nobody really cares how many goals we let in as long as we score more than we let in," he said. "It's a collective commitment in our defensive zone. Everybody knows what they're doing. Everybody's bought in by now.

"It's taken a team effort every game, from Casey out to the forwards taking over the points. As long as everybody's on the same page, which we have been for quite a while now, things are going to get done and we'll be able to get of our zone and create some offense."

Hardowa had high praise for DeSmith, whose GAA dipped to 1.19 while his save percentage rose to .961.

"I think it's a lot of maturity," Hardowa said while explaining why DeSmith has been virtually impenetrable. "Obviously coming in as a freshman last year he was still pretty confident. I think he had a good summer and put in a lot of work.

"Our goalie coach (Mike Buckley) is awesome. He's put a lot of commitment into working with Casey and helping him tweak little things to make him better. I think it's showed in the first half of the season."

Given how the game started, all indications were it would be anything but close.

Goumas gave UNH a 1-0 lead at 11:24 of the first.

Teammate Dalton Steelman deflected a Ryan Santana pass to Goumas, who beat Matt O'Connor (32 saves) with a low shot just inside the right post.

Then, at 14:10, freshman Max Gaudreault scored his first collegiate goal when he stuffed the puck between O'Connor's pads from just outside the crease.

O'Regan sliced BU's deficit in half when, during a power play, he buried the rebound of a Matt Grzelck shot.

Goumas wrapped up the scoring when he slid the puck into an open net with one second remaining.

"I'm not taking anything away from Casey because he's playing terrific," Umile said. "But the defensive group in front of him is as good as we've had. They've made a big difference. We may give up the first shot but they clear it and don't give up second and third shots."


 NH Sports Angle more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Bill Belichick: Eagles joint practices as productive as any

Big Knockout Boxing has grown from NH debut to Las Vegas attraction

Toronto Blue Jays Minor League System: Philosophy change?

Spring trial likely for former UNH women's hockey coach

Special golf cart helping Vietnam veteran play game he loves article

And so it begins: Equipment distribution starts a new era in Plymouth football

Tailgating changes for UNH football games

Report: Pirates' pitcher Jeff Locke cleared in gambling probe involving childhood friend from Conway

Tim OSullivan: Even with NFL success, NHs Kelly remembers his roots

Chip Kelly: 'Put some Galoshes on and go play'

Survey says Duke the most hated college hoops team in NH

Cheyenne Woods, Tiger's niece, trying to make big time article

Gorham papermill owner Lynn Tilton is getting Yale tennis award

Ex-bank president co-authors racing book

New England Patriots are the most hated NFL team in the world

Travis Hughes: It's time to drastically overhaul minor league hockey in North America

Portsmouth native, 47, conquers 21-mile swim of the English Channel

Bennett to take control of the flags for Granite State Pro Stock Series

Air Force captain serving in NH honored before Red Sox-Yankees crowd at Fenway

Newmarket woman second to run solo across the U.S.

VIDEO: A car's-eye view of the demolition derby at Cheshire County Fair

With NASCAR's $8.2B TV deal, nobody wants to be at back of pack

Kelly tinkers with Philadelphia offense

New Hampshires Sam Fuld traded back to A's

CAA preseason poll puts a target on New Hampshire, coach says

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

    SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

    ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!