Hockey East Weekly: 10/24/11

BOSTON — After wins over UMass and Northeastern, the Boston College Eagles retained their No. 1 national ranking and have jumped off to a quick lead in the conference standings while earning Team of the Week honors.

Merrimack vaulted to No. 9 in the nation after victories over two pairs of Huskies (Northeastern and UConn), while sophomore goaltender Sam Marotta was named the league’s Defensive Player of the Week.

The Eagles opened their set with a 4-2 win against UMass, who was playing its lone game of the weekend. Bill Arnold scored twice and Chris Kreider added a goal and an assist in the victory, while goaltender Parker Milner registered 18 saves and improved to 4-1-0 on the season. UMass freshman Andrew Tegeler and senior Michael Marcou scored goals, while Jeff Teglia suffered his first loss of the season despite a 31-save outing.

On Saturday, Arnold scored the game-winning goal at the 4:00 mark of overtime as BC edged host Northeastern by a 4-3 count at Matthews Arena.

Milner stopped 19 shots in the victory as his squad outlasted the Huskies and freshman Joseph Manno’s two goals.

Because of Manno’s efforts, the Montreal, Quebec native was named Hockey East Rookie of the Week. He registered five shots on goal in two league games, which both finished on a down note for the Huskies.

Arnold, a Needham, Mass. native and this week’s Hockey East Co-Player of the Week, leads the Eagles with five goals and ten points on the season. He scored three times in two league victories this weekend, including both game-winning scores.

BC returns to action on Friday when they travel to UMass-Lowell for the first of a home-and-home series at the Tsongas Center. UMass will meet No. 12 Boston University in a two-game series, including a Friday night showdown on NESN from the Mullins Center.

Merrimack defenseman Kyle Bigos and forward Ryan Flanigan each posted a goal and an assist as the Warriors dispatched Northeastern by a 4-1 score to open the college’s Homecoming Weekend.

Senior Joe Cannata finished with 27 stops to earn his 45th-career win as Ludwig Karlsson was the lone Husky to light the lamp in the defeat.

NU has one game this upcoming weekend, which takes place during UNH’s Homecoming Weekend on Saturday.

In Sam Marotta’s first-career start and blanking, three Warriors scored multiple points in a 5-0 romp of Connecticut.

The Warriors trek north this weekend for two at Vermont’s Gutterson Fieldhouse, looking for their first 5-0 start since 1987. Prior to beating UConn, Merrimack had not started with four straight wins since 1993.

The Green and Gold faced Minnesota in a pair of games at Mariucci Arena, coming out with a split and a comeback 5-4 Sunday win that saw junior Sebastian Stalberg and sophomore Connor Brickley each score two goals. Rob Madore made 31 saves in the victory, which marked the 700th win in the history of the UVM men’s hockey program.

Stalberg, the league’s Co-Player of the Week, scored the game-winner at 7:07 of the third period on Sunday and finished the weekend with seven shots on goal for the Catamounts.

The host Gophers romped the Catamounts by a 6-0 count in the series opener on Friday night. Madore and sophomore Alex Vazzano both saw time in goal.

Boston University dropped to No. 12 in the nation as the Terriers dropped a 5-4 decision against Holy Cross at Agganis Arena on Saturday. BU’s bright spot was senior Alex Chiasson, who scored two goals and an assist.

New Hampshire snapped a four-game, season-opening unbeaten streak with a 3-3 tie at St. Cloud on Saturday. In Friday’s contest, the host Huskies emerged victorious with a 7-5 win.

In the loss, UNH saw five different players light the lamp and sophomore Nick Sorkin scored a goal and an assist for the Wildcats.

Sorkin scored two goals in the tie as the Wildcats outshot the Huskies, 47-24. Sophomore and Reading, Mass. native Jeff Wyer, in his first collegiate start, turned aside 24 shots including 11 in the third period and is now 0-1-1.

The Maine Black Bears had the week off and fell completely out of the national rankings. They return home to Alfond Arena for two games against Providence this weekend.

Speaking of the Friars, they hosted a pair of games against defending national champion Minnesota-Duluth this past weekend and earned a hard-fought 2-2 tie in the series finale on Saturday. Senior forward Matt Bergland scored the game-tying goal at the 17:39 mark of the third for the Friars as they squared the score for good against the No. 15 Bulldogs.

In a 5-2 loss on Friday, seniors Andy Balysky and David Brown scored for the Friars.

UMass-Lowell has been idle since last Tuesday when they dropped a 3-2 overtime decision to Connecticut at Nashua, N.H.’s Conway Arena.

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