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Hockey East roundup: Warriors complete sweep; BU, PC win close games

Merrimack 4, Northeastern 2
The Warriors scored four unanswered goals in the second and third periods to come back and defeat the visiting Huskies to capture the season series and earn a sweep of the weekend pair at Lawler Arena. Eight different Warriors recorded at least one point during the victory, including three freshman skaters. Senior captain Vinny Saponari and rookie Michael McMurtry each posted their first goals of the season in the latter half of the opening stanza, while junior Mike Collins took over Hockey East’s point-scoring lead as he potted a second-effort goal past NU senior Chris Rawlings (29 saves) with 28 seconds remaining in the second period. Merrimack’s winning goal came off the stick of junior captain Jordan Heywood at 16:32 of the third as he took a drop from Collins to beat Rawlings low for his third goal of the series. Espoo, Finland product Rasmus Tirronen made 24 saves, including ten in the middle stanza to lead the Warriors in the first win of his collegiate career. The Warriors, which will entertain Boston University and Connecticut next weekend, jumped above .500 on the season and now stand at 4-3-1. On the flip side, the Huskies look to right the ship from a five-game winless stretch next weekend in a two-game series against Alabama-Huntsville at Matthews Arena.

Boston University 4, North Dakota 2
The Terriers were sure not to exit Grand Forks empty handed as they scored three times in less than four minutes late in the third period to upend UND in Ralph Engelstad Arena. After junior Matt Nieto tied the game with 5:21 left, freshmen Matt Lane and Danny O'Regan found the back of the net in the final two minutes to earn the win. Fellow rookie Matt O'Connor improved to a perfect 4-0-0 with a 26-save performance, sending BU to its first win ever in Grand Forks in eight tries. Additionally, senior Sean Escobedo posted a pair of assists, distributing the wealth to the rest of the attack. Host netminder Zane Gothberg, who is also a Boston Bruins draft prospect, posted 29 saves for UND as the Terriers held a 33-28 shots edge in the contest.

Vermont 2, Providence 0
Rookie Brody Hoffman made 24 saves in his first-collegiate shutout pacing the Catamounts to a Saturday victory over the visiting Friars, salvaging a weekend split at Gutterson Fieldhouse. Junior Matt White's goal just 10:06 into the contest proved to be all the offense the Green and Gold would need in its first regular-season victory of the year. The Friars fired 56 total shots in the losing cause, including 18 were blocked by the Vermont defense. UVM's second-period goal came off the stick of junior captain H.T. Lenz - also his first of the season. The Catamounts return to the ice next Saturday when they visit rival New Hampshire for the first time this season, while the Friars continue league play Friday at UMass.

Joshua Kummins is the Hockey East beat writer and a weekend editor for SB Nation Boston. Follow him on Twitter @JoshuaKummins.