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UMass welcomes Vermont in pre-Thanksgiving Hockey East battle

AMHERST — Assuming both coaches stay put for a little while, Tuesday will mark the first of many meetings between University of Massachusetts hockey coach John Micheletto and Vermont’s Kevin Sneddon, his former boss.

It might not be their first of many Tuesday night games though. Micheletto wasn’t a fan of the annual pre-Thanksgiving Day meeting between the two western New England rivals, so today’s 7 p.m. pre-Turkey tilt at the Mullins Center might be one of, if not the, last one.

“It was something that was started when Vermont was in the ECAC,” Micheletto said. “It was trying to develop a tradition with a nonleague opponent. I think under those circumstances, it was good. Now that Vermont is in Hockey East, from a scheduling standpoint I don’t know if it works for me. I’m sure it’s something Kevin and I might take a look at in the future.”

Micheletto was looking forward to catching up with Sneddon, as well as some of the players he coached.

“Away from game time, being able to connect with people that you know is always a good thing,” he said.

After Sunday’s tough 8-2 loss to Lowell, Micheletto was glad to get his team back on the ice.

“Going forward, I would think it’s the best thing to get right back on the ice,” Micheletto said. “We’ll see at about 9:15 Tuesday night. I think it’s a good opportunity to get right back on the horse after Sunday.”

Vermont (2-4-2) has played all eight of its games against Hockey East opponents. The Catamounts lost 6-2 to BU Friday before beating Northeastern 3-2 Sunday.

Senior Chris McCarthy leads UVM with seven points (four goals, three assists). Freshman Brady Hoffman has started all games in goals with a 2.78 goals against average and a .910 save percentage.

Matt Vautour can be reached at mvautour@gazettenet.com. Follow UMass coverage on Twitter at twitter.com/GazetteUMass. Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at www.facebook.com/GazetteUMassCoverage.

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