The UConn men’s ice hockey team traveled to Burlington, Vermont this past weekend to face the Catamounts in a two-game series.
There is a lot of anticipation for the Huskies this year as they have added 12 new freshmen, four transfer players and are coming off their run to the Hockey East Championship last March.
Right from the first puck drop, Saturday’s matchup was fast-paced for both teams. The Huskies had their chances to get on the board first, but were blocked on multiple attempts by Vermont goaltender Gabe Carriere, keeping the game scoreless.
Late in the period, junior Andrew Lucas made a cross ice pass to freshman Matthew Wood, giving him the chance to shoot. Wood scored his first collegiate goal and gave UConn a 1-0 lead. Immediately after, Vermont took advantage of a UConn turnover and tied the game 1-1 with a goal by Catamounts William Lemay.
The Huskies got up on the Catamounts in the second period with sophomore Ryan Tverberg firing the puck past the goaltender to give UConn a 2-1 lead. Tverberg was assisted by Lucas. Vermont had their chances to tie up the game after a turnover in UConn’s defensive zone but senior captain Roman Kinal broke up the play between the Vermont skater and retrieved the puck, preventing them from tying the game again.
In the third period, the Huskies ran away with the game and scored multiple goals. Freshman Tristan Fraser got right past the goalie and scored his first career goal with UConn making the score 3-1 Huskies. After UConn won the faceoff, sophomore Nick Capone fired home to extend UConn’s lead to 4-1 early in the period.
After gaining the larger lead, UConn’s defense dominated the rest of the game and led the Huskies to their first win of the season. Sophomore goaltender Logan Terness finished the game with 15 saves and Lucas ended with two assists.
This was an exciting game for the Huskies as the four goals were all scored by different players. This was a great first impression for UConn as they showcased many different parts of their game and how much talent is filled within this year’s squad. All of this together propelled the Ice Bus to their first victory of the season.
To wrap up the series against Vermont on Sunday, UConn took the second game 3-1. The game started with the Huskies coming in full force and using their speed to beat Vermont to the net. The Catamounts’ tough defense kept the Huskies from scoring in the first period, but that didn’t last long after Wood received a pass from Lucas, firing a shot past the goaltender for a power play goal. This gave UConn a 1-0 lead in the second period. The Huskies defense was highlighted by freshman goaltender Arsenii Sergeev who made 11 saves in the period, keeping the Catamounts from getting on the board.
UConn put constant pressure on Vermont’s defensive zone for the entirety of the game. After a Catamount turnover, Chase Bradley was in the right position to receive a pass from Capone and shoot to score the goal, putting UConn up 2-0.
The second period was strong for the Huskies but the job wasn’t yet finished. Transfer Ty Amonte saw the opportunity, taking the puck around the net but missing on the first attempt. He then deflected the net, giving the Huskies a 3-0 lead in the third period. This goal was Amonte’s first career goal and it gave insurance to the Huskies as the clock was winding down. In the final minutes of the game, Vermont would get on the board, but ultimately UConn came away with a 3-1 victory.
The win was secured, earning UConn the sweep of the two-game weekend series against Vermont. These wins make them 2-0 in the very early season. Connecticut will return home this weekend to face Union on Oct. 7 and Oct. 8.