UMass Lowell went from worst to…well, very close to first this season.
The Riverhawks drastically turned around their program with a 24-13-1 season, but it drew to a close Saturday evening with a 4-2 loss to Union College in the NCAA East Regional Final in Bridgeport, CT.
UMass Lowell played a close game with Union, neutralizing the strong Dutchman first line of Matt Hatch, Kelly Zajac and Wayne Simpson. Even with the Riverhawks’ strong defense, Union took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission, thanks to Daniel Ciampini’s third goal of the season.
Union added to their lead with second line center Jeremy Welsh’s 27th goal of the season at the 7:12 mark of the second period. UMass Lowell finally answered about seven minutes later, as senior David Vallorani assisted Terrence Wallin to get the Riverhawks on the board.
A Riley Wetmore holding call sent Union on the power play, where Josh Jooris scored to reclaim a two goal lead for the Dutchmen.
Five minutes into the third period, Matt Ferreira scored a sneaky unassisted goal for UMass Lowell, bringing the game within one. The rest of the game was played without penalty. UMass Lowell pulled Doug Carr to gain the man advantage to try to even the game, but it only resulted in a Union empty-net goal with 40 seconds remaining in the game.
Carr kept up his steady ways for the Riverhawks, making 35 saves on the evening. Carr is only a sophomore, and will be a key cog in the well-working UMass Lowell machine as they try to better this year’s success next season. Troy Grosenick made 19 saves for Union.
With the win, Union punches the first ticket to the Frozen Four, advancing to the NCAA championships for the first time in program history.