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NCAA men's hockey | Denver 3, UMass Lowell 2

UMass Lowell men’s hockey falls short in NCAA regional vs. No. 1 seed Denver

The fourth-seeded UMass Lowell men’s hockey team was eliminated from the NCAA tournament after battling to 2-2 tie in the third period only to watch Cameron Wright score a late go-ahead goal that lifted the top-seeded Denver Pioneers to a regional semifinal victory in Loveland, Colo.

The River Hawks (21-11-3) of Hockey East got goals from Lucas Condotta and Connor Sodergren. Meanwhile, the Pioneers (27-9-1) of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference got goals from Justin Lee, Carter Savoie and the winner from Wright at 17:03 of the third period to earn a berth in the regional final opposite Minnesota Duluth.

Condotta gave the River Hawks an early 1-0 lead when he tallied his 10th goal of the season at 9:42 of the first period. Reid Stefanson and Marek Korencik were credited with the primary helpers on the tally.

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With less than two minutes remaining in the period, Lee scored the equalizer at 18:37 — with McKade Webster and Antti Tuomisto picking up assists — to help the Pioneers tie it, 1-1, before the first-period intermission.

After both teams battled to a scoreless stalemate in the second period, Savoie, with assist from Mike Benning, put the Pioneers on top, 2-1, with the go-ahead goal at 9:26 of the third.

Connor Sodergren answered for UMass Lowell when he tallied at 14:21 to tie it, 2-2. Jon McDonald and Matt Crasa were credited with assists. But the Pioneers came back and pulled away on Wright’s go-ahead tally that beat UMass Lowell goaltender Owen Savory (22 saves) at 17:03.

UMass Lowell was making its ninth appearance in the NCAA Tournament as a Division 1 program.  The River Hawks entered with an 8-8-1 all-time record in Div, I NCAA Tournament play, with an unblemished 7-0-0 record in the Regional semifinal round, reaching the Frozen Four just once (2013).

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