The UConn men’s hockey team (3-2-3) returns to the action this weekend when they take on UMass (2-4-0).
Last weekend, the Huskies split a road series at Notre Dame. After winning the opener 4-2, the Fighting Irish came back and won the second game 6-2.
Freshman goalkeeper Adam Huska’s efforts in the first game earned him the Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week. Huska has split time with senior Rob Nichols so far this season.
After struggles with discipline earlier in the season, head coach Mike Cavanaugh has gotten his team in line. The Huskies are heading into the weekend as the least penalized team in Hockey East averaging 11.9 penalty minutes per game.
The Minutemen are 0-2 in Hockey East play so far this season and are currently on a three game losing streak. UMass lost to conferences foes New Hampshire and Boston College last week.
Getting shots off has been a struggle for UMass this season. The Minutemen are averaging a league-low 20.8 shots per game; the Huskies in comparison are averaging 32.38 shots per game. This lack of offensive spark has led the Minutemen to only average 2.8 goals per game.
Two players the Huskies will have to look out for are Patrick Lee and Dominic Trento. The talented juniors lead the team with six points apiece. UConn will likely face freshman keeper Ryan Wischow. Wischow has played in four games this season, including a 3-0 win over Colorado College.
The Minutemen are also a very young team this year. Heading into the weekend, freshmen have accounted for 41 percent of the team's goals.
UMass gave the Huskies problems last year sweeping the home and home series. In the first matchup at home, the game ended 4-2, while the second leg in Amherst finished 5-3. The Huskies are 1-1 in Hockey East play so far this season and will be looking to move about the 500 mark this weekend.
Both of the Huskies’ losses this season have come on the road. UConn is currently in the midst of a five-game road trip that will take them to Ohio State next.
Antonio Salazar is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.