BOSTON -- The Vermont Catamounts held a one-goal lead for the entire third period on Friday night as they earned a 2-1 win over the host Northeastern Huskies at Matthews Arena.
Senior Ben Albertson, a Green Mountain State native from Williston, scored the winner at 11:29 of the second period to lift the visitors to their first victory on St. Botolph Street since Jan. 14, 2011. The Green and Gold has won just two of the last six games in the all-time series, in which they are favored by a 26-20-5 margin.
"[They] give our top players rest," UVM head coach Kevin Sneddon said of the ability for his team to play its fourth line regularly. "A lot of teams have to go down to three lines, but we feel like we can play that fourth line right now…It takes the pressure of us having to shorten the bench and it keeps everybody fresh."
On that play, freshman right winger Jonathan Turk and defenseman Caylen Walls were credited with assists.
The Huskies scored the first goal of the game as sophomore Adam Reid scored on the power play 6:56 into the contest. He had two open looks on Vermont freshman Brody Hoffman in the final 15 seconds of the game, but was unable to score on either whack into an open side of the net on a late 6-on-4 edge.
With the victory, the Catamounts improve to 9-14-4 on the season and 6-10-4 in Hockey East play, jumping ahead of UMass for seventh place in the league standings. UVM has quietly won three of the last four games, including a 3-0 defeat of Maine last Saturday night at Gutterson Fieldhouse.
"We are a better hockey team this year," Sneddon said. "We have a tight unit now, I think we have great leadership. The team has kind of taken over and understands it is their team now…It’s not too late [to make a run] either. We still have a lot of games left and a very important one tomorrow night."
The UVM end of the ice was rather quiet for the majority of the final stanza (until the Huskies had a final-minute edge) as Hoffman saw just four shots before that point, en route to his ninth win of the season. Vermont held the overall shots on goal edge, 34-27.
Despite a victory over Boston University in the Beanpot semifinal, the Huskies have been victorious in just two of the last ten games (2-6-2) and stands 8-14-3 overall.
"It was a key game for us in desperation and trying to get back into the playoff hunt," head coach Jim Madigan said. "We did not respond until we got into the third period and you can not win a game in this league when you play one period."
Joshua Kummins covers Hockey East for SB Nation. Follow him on Twitter @JoshuaKummins.