Three Up, Three Down, January 31

Posted by: Joe Meloni

Northeastern’s Cody Ferriero had a fantastic weekend for the Huskies, scoring four time in two NU wins at Vermont. The sophomore’s turbulent career on St. Botolph Street seems to be on one of its trends up. However, the problem for Ferriero, and Northeastern really, has been the inevitable slope down.

In the two wins over UVM, Ferriero scored four goals and assisted on another. Earlier this year, he scored five goals and recorded five assists in a 10-game span. However, he missed the first four games of the season due to suspension and entered last weekend pointless in three consecutive games.

The peaks have been great Ferriero — and Northeastern — but the valleys have been devastating.

Three Up

Derek Arnold, Sophomore, Forward, UMass Lowell

Derek Arnold scored a game-winning goal in overtime at Northeastern on Jan. 21. He was scoreless three nights later in a 1-0 loss to Providence, which doesn’t appear to have sat well. He scored three times last weekend in two wins for UMass Lowell over sister-school Massachusetts. The wins clinched the first Alumni Cup in three years for the River Hawks, and Arnold was a big part.

Arnold’s second season in Lowell has been a good one. On the year, he has 12 goals and eight assists, and the River Hawks are 12-3-0 when he has a point. He’s reached the scoresheet in 10 of his last 13 games, including four goals in his last five games.

Contributions from its entire lineup have sustained Lowell throughout its run, which currently has the River Hawks slotted third in the PairWise. With Vermont coming to town next weekend, UML has a chance to thrust itself even further into the Hockey East race. And Arnold gets the opportunity to pad his stats with the league’s worst defensive team in town.

Barry Almeida, Senior, Forward, Boston College

Barry Almeida picked up an overtime winner on Saturday night as Boston College swept New Hampshire. For BC, January hadn’t been the kindest month to that point — BC entered last weekend with a 1-3-1 record in 2012. However, a pair of wins over UNH pushed BC back up the standings, and Almeida was a big reason for that.

Overall, the diminutive winger has been one of BC’s best players all season, despite being overshadowed within the relentlessly talented BC lineup. On the year, Almeida is tied with BC junior Chris Kreider for third in the league with 16 goals. Despite the sweep to Maine two weekends ago, Almeida has been on a roll for BC. In his last four games, he has scored six times. Beyond that, while the BC offense has sputtered since November, Almeida has been fairly consistent with points in nine of his last 13 games.

In his three-plus season in Chestnut Hill, Almeida’s role has evolved to an extent. However, he has always been one of BC’s most gifted penalty killers. Forced to play a more prominent role in the BC forward lines, the senior has excelled, ranking first on the team in goals and second in points.

Mark Anthoine, Sophomore, Forward, Maine

Getting scoring from its entire roster, not just its top line, has propelled Maine to its current position, battling for home ice in the conference tournament and an at-large bid to NCAA Tournament. Mark Anthoine is one of the main sources of this depth scoring. The sophomore scored the game-winner in Friday’s 4-2 in over Boston University, which was the first win in a weekend sweep of the Terriers.

Anthoine has a point in 12 of his last 16 games, and seven points in his last seven games. The versatile winger has been a little slow to develop, but Maine coach Tim Whitehead knew the production would come at some point.

Anthoine has been especially dangerous on the power play for the Black Bears. Eight of his nine goals, including his game-winner on Friday, and four of his five assists have come on the man advantage. His scoring has been quite timely for Maine as well, picking up a pair of game-winners for Maine on its recent 10-2-2 run.

Three Down

Nick Bruneteau, Sophomore, Defenseman, Vermont

One of the league’s most promising young defenseman has struggled in the second half, like Vermont as a team. The Catamounts began the second half hoping for a run that would position them for a playoff spot. Instead, UVM finished January with a 1-6-0 record and is all but eliminated from the Hockey East Tournament.

Very few Catamounts had strong months, but Bruneteau struggled especially. The sophomore finished the month a minus-7, with four assists. As he develops, his status as one of the best puck movers and distributers in Hockey East will only grow more certain, but his defensive ability has not caught up just yet.

Against Northeastern last weekend, Bruneteau was a minus-4 in two games.

Steven Guzzo, Redshirt Freshman, Forward, Massachusetts

In his last three games, Steven Guzzo has picked up three assists and rated a minus-3. These are hardly bad numbers, but the redshirt freshman appears here almost entirely because of a bad decision he made with the Minutemen trailing, 4-2, against UML on Saturday.

A hitting from behind penalty forced UMass to kill a 5-minute major penalty while hoping to create some offense. Guzzo’s energy has been a welcomed addition to the UMass top six this season. However, problems with penalties have hampered UMass as a whole, especially last weekend against Lowell.

The Minutemen began the weekend within striking distance of a home ice spot. Now, questions pertain to whether or not they’ll even qualify for the Hockey East Tournament. Plainly stupid penalties, like the one Guzzo took late Saturday, are the main reason.

Ross Mauermann, Freshman, Forward, Providence

Without leader goal scorer Tim Schaller, who is still out with mononucleosis, Providence needs other players to account for the missing offense. Mauermann, one of the league’s most productive freshman, has not done enough to fill in for his teammate in the last four games. After scoring two against Vermont on Jan. 15, Mauermann has gone four games without a goal. Meanwhile, the Friars are 1-3-0 in those four games.

Their struggles have cost them a chance at the fourth and final home ice spot. At this point, strong Februarys from UMass, Northeastern or New Hampshire could force Providence out of the tournament altogether, unless they get more production from the players charged with spelling Schaller — Mauermann is chief among them.

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