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Loose pucks: UMass Amworst

November 22, 2011

Three reasons Lowell will always be better than Amherst:
1) Chad Ruhwedel.

We touched on this briefly yesterday but how about this kid, eh? He had a very strong start to last season before slowing a bit as it wore on, but this year he looks like a man possessed in all three zones. And where did that goalscoring touch come from? Two highlight reel goals in as many weeks, both on the rush. We really love watching this kid play.

2) A strong rebound.

It would have been easy enough for the team to hang its head and slump through Saturday’s game after a dismal Friday performance, but they did just the opposite. The River Hawks took the game to Amherst early and often, and were justly rewarded with a 4-0 win. Only allowing 16 shots is something that we’d love to see more of, but we’re just not sure there’s too many games against teams as bad as the Minutemen.

3) Pantsing Amherst.

That always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always, always feels really good. Always.

Two things that have us bummed:
1) Friday’s game.

That was the flattest Lowell has looked by a wide margin. And that includes an inexplicable loss to UConn. Frankly, we’re glad Norm Bazin made some tough decisions to send messages to players who underperformed in the game, even if it meant Scott Wilson watched Saturday from the stands. He would have carved up that Amherst defense like so much Thanksgiving turkey but he also has to learn from bad experiences. Onward and upward.

2) The goaltending situation.

Once again, after Saturday’s game, Bazin reaffirmed that there is no No. 1 goaltender on this team yet. Our question is: How? Carr is 5-1 and while the team has certainly scored far more for him than Brian Robbins, there’s something to be said for that. He should be the guy. If Friday’s game didn’t illustrate that, then Saturday should have. This is a really simple decision to make. We can’t imagine why it’s not being made.

Stat of the Week
Saturday’s slam-dunk no-doubter win over Amherst shouldn’t have surprised anyone, but there was some amount of dismay among Minutemen fans because this was, shockingly, the first time Lowell had lost to that horrible team in six tries. Lowell’s five straight losses to Amherst was the worst run in school history.

Surprisingly, that’s also the longest streak of success Lowell ever had against Amherst, when they won five straight between 1997-98 and 1998-99. You’d have thought it would be more because of how much better Lowell is than Amherst in every conceivable way.

Who’s worse than Amherst?
Nobody. Deal with it.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Monty permalink
    November 23, 2011 10:23 am

    Well after reading this, and then seeing the UMass result last night … your last line might be right on.

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