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FINAL: UConn Men's Hockey Falls to Northeastern, 5-2

The puck will drop at 7:05 p.m. at the XL Center. We'll have updates at each intermission through the end of the game right here!

Ian Bethune
Third Period

20:00 - Third period under way, do you believe in highly unlikely occurrences?

14:07 - Letunov creates an amazing chance by skating past a few defenders and then getting by the last one by moving the puck between his legs but sends the shot just wide along the ice. Northeastern counter-attack leads to a goal at the other end. 5-2 Northeastern

13:31 - Penalty Northeastern

7:00 - Fans starting to trickle out as time is winding down.

FINAL: UConn goes down, 5-2 at the hands of a superior Northeastern team. No shame here, the other Huskies are pretty darn good. The two teams will meet again tomorrow night in Boston.

Second Period

20:00 - Second period is under way, anything can happen!

7:09 - No goals yet, but Northeastern is dominating. The puck has been in UConn's zone for most of the period but the home Huskies are keeping it even so far in terms of goals, at least. Hopefully they can make something happen. 4-1 Northeastern

4:26 - GOAL UConn - Joe Masonius takes a feed from Max Letunov a few feet inside the blue line and fires one past Ryan Ruck for the power play goal! 4-2 Northeastern

END 2nd Period - Progress! UConn wins the second period despite being mostly outplayed. The Huskies are battling nicely, so credit to them for keeping it this close. Northeastern is ahead in shots (36-13) and face-offs won (23-17). 4-2 Northeastern

First Period

20:00 - The puck has dropped and we are under way!

17:52 - UConn goes on the power play after an elbowing penalty on Sam Kurker, who hit goalie Rob Nichols while a shot was coming his way.

17:04 - GOAL UCONN - Tage Thompson nets his 11th power play goal on the season, firing a shot from the left circle on a feed from Joe Masonius. Max Letunov got the second assist. 1-0 UConn

15:01 - GOAL NEU - Nolan Stevens hits a wrister past Rob Nichols, assisted by center John Stevens. Tied 1-1

14:24 - GOAL NEU - Uh oh. Patrick Schule slips one in after the puck converges in a corner of the crease. 2-1 Northeastern

6:27 - Media Timeout - Northeastern has been absolutely dominating play, ahead in shots so far 17-4. The puck has been in UConn's zone for most of the period, and has narrowly avoided growing the deficit. Cavanaugh's squad appears to be overmatched early but maybe they can make something happen. They've been efficient at least!

6:10 - Just kidding. Goal Northeastern. UConn turns it over in its own zone and senior forward Mike McMurty fires a wrister past Rob Nichols unassisted. 3-1 Northeastern

4:14 - Well this is getting out of hand. 4-1 Northeastern

END 1st Period - The period mercifully ends without Northeastern adding any more to its lead. UConn is keeping the fight up but the other Huskies are dominating them pretty thoroughly. Northeastern has the advantage in shots, 20-4, and face-offs, 13-9. 4-1 Northeastern

Preview

Mike Cavanaugh's UConn Huskies are battling to finish among the top eight teams in Hockey East. That is no small feat, especially for a team in its second year in the conference, but it would mean hosting a home series in the Hockey East Tournament at the XL Center- where UConn has enjoyed a nice home-ice advantage. Right now they sit ninth in the standings.

The Northeastern Huskies are one of the six teams vying for the final three home-ice seeds in the tournament. The fake Huskies are leading that pack at the moment, sitting in sixth place with 16 points- six more than 11th place Maine. Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Merrimack sit between them in that order.

After this series with Northeastern, UConn's regular season will close with a home and away with New Hampshire. The time to strike is now. Unfortunately, Northeastern is unbeaten in 12 of its last 13 games. Goaltender Ryan Ruck has a 1.52 goals against average during that streak, allowing two goals or fewer in 11 of those games. The fake Huskies are led in scoring by junior forward Zach Aston-Reese and sophomore forward Nolan Stevens, who was named Warrior Player of the Week on Monday.

This is the fifth-ever meeting between these two schools, with Northeastern winning all four previous meetings.

Max Letunov and Tage Thompson have reared into form late in their freshman seasons, with both holding very impressive numbers. Thompson leads Hockey East and the NCAA in power play goals on the season with 10. He has scored a point in 14 of the Huskies' last 20 games.

Letunov has a team-high 33 points on the season, leading the team in both goals (15), and assists (18), and is tied for the UConn Division 1 freshman points record set by Cole Schneider in the 2010-2011 season. The rookie sensation has notched a point in 17 of UConn's last 19 games.

Today another freshman, Marco Richter will be joining those two on the first line. In other lineup news, Rob Nichols is in net, which is good.

We'll have live goal updates and a blurb/stats update here after each period. Feel free to share any thoughts or comments if you're at the game or listening online! We'll also, of course, be live-tweeting @TheUConnBlog as well.