Preview: UMass Lowell at Providence College

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#8 Massachusetts Lowell (15-6-2, 5-3-1 HEA)
at #7 Providence College (14-5-5, 6-4-1 HEA)

When: Friday, Jan. 24 at 7:00PM EST
Venue: Schneider Arena
City/State: Providence, R.I.
Notes: Conference game
Tickets: Click Here
Radio/TV: 980AM WCAP
Listen Online: ESPN Radio
Watch Online: Click Here
Live Stats: Click Here
Live Blog: Click Here

 

Top Forwards

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Joseph Pendenza (9-8-17, +2)
Derek Arnold (7-7-14, +4)
Scott Wilson (5-9-14, +5)
Ross Mauermann (14-15-29, +24)
Nick Saracino (4-12-16, +6)
Mark Jankowski (8-7-15, +11)

 

Top Defense

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Zack Kamrass (2-12-14, +14)
Christian Folin (2-7-9, -1)
Michael Kapla (1-7-8, +5)
John Gilmour (3-10-13, +6)
Steven Shamanski (6-6-12, +15)
Anthony Florentino (3-5-8, +14)

 

Top Goaltenders

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C. Hellebuyck (8-4-1, 1.62 GAA, .946 SV%)
D. Carr (7-2-1, 1.88 GAA, .930 SV%)
J. Gillies (11-3-4, 2.00 GAA, .936 SV%)
N. Ellis (3-2-1, 2.23 GAA, .910 SV%)

 

Key Stats

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Power Play: 20.0% (20/100)
Penalty Kill: 81.3% (74/91)
Goals Per Game: 2.74
Goals Against: 1.87
Average Weight: 184.26 lbs.
Average Height: 5’11.44″
Average Age: 22y 4m
Power Play: 13.4% (15/112)
Penalty Kill: 86.5% (96/111)
Goals Per Game: 3.29
Goals Against: 2.12
Average Weight: 187.90 lbs.
Average Height: 6’0.31″
Average Age: 21y 7m

 

Preview

A battle of top-10 ranked Hockey East schools will get underway on Friday night in the first game of home-and-home series between the UMass Lowell River Hawks (No. 8) and Providence College Friars (No. 7).

The River Hawks and Friars will meet for the first time since last year’s Hockey East semifinals when UMass Lowell topped Providence to advance to the Hockey East Championship on their way to their first ever Hockey East title in school history.

Providence started the season off 9-1-1 over their first 11 games, but have are 1-3-2 over their last six games. The Friars have reached as high as No. 3 in the USCHO.com poll, but have fallen to No. 7 as of late.

The Friars have drawn the fourth most penalty minutes (112) of all Hockey East teams, but have converted only 15 goals during those power plays, a league worst 13.4 percent.

Highlighting the weekend is the battle of two of the Hockey East and the nation’s best goaltenders, Connor Hellebuyck and Jon Gillies.

Overall the River Hawks are 44-50-11 (.419) against the Friars and 23-25-4 at Providence College home sites. Last season, UMass Lowell was 3-1-0 against the Friars.

“It’s become quite a rivalry,” said UMass Lowell head coach Norm Bazin. “Both clubs started with new coaches at the same time, we’re on an even footing; both have strong defensive clubs that play hard offensively.  It should be a great match up.”

Puck drops at 7:00 p.m. eastern and can be heard on ESPN Radio via WCAP 980 or the ESPN Radio App worldwide.

If you can’t make it to the arena, our LIVE BLOG and twitter (@JMSoderberg) will have live updates starting with the puck drop.

Justin Soderberg has covered the UMass Lowell River Hawks and Hockey East for over two years. Soderberg also contributes to Boston Bruins coverage for Inside Hockey. Follow him on twitter: @JMSoderberg