POTSDAM — Some of the same problems from 2012 surfaced in the first game in 2013 for the Clarkson University men’s hockey team.
The Golden Knights started a stretch where they play nine of 11 games at Cheel Arena with a 2-1 loss to UMass-Lowell in a nonconference game before 1,799 fans Friday night.
The loss dropped Clarkson (4-9-5 overall) to 1-5-1 at Cheel Arena this season. Last season Clarkson was 12-5-2 at home but the Golden Knights have not been able to turn Cheel Arena into an advantage so far this season.
Clarkson had not played since a 3-1 loss to Mercyhurst on Dec. 15 at Cheel Arena while the River Hawks (8-7-1) defeated Bentley 3-2 on Dec. 30.
But the Golden Knights did not come out sluggish and took a 1-0 lead just 3 minutes, 55 seconds into the game on a goal from defenseman Andrew Himelson that came from a shot from the near the boards and just in front of the blue line that sailed over the glove of UMass-Lowell goalie Connor Hellebuyck.
Himelson’s goal, which was his first of the season, turned out to be the only offensive highlight of the night for the Golden Knights.
Clarkson had chances to extend the lead to 2-0, but missed converting on breakaways and a three-on-one situation and had just 13 shots on goal after two periods.
Freshman goalie Greg Lewis, who had a night off when Clarkson played Mercyhurst, helped keep the Golden Knights in the lead by stopping 23 shots in the first and second period, including a glove snag on a backhand shot by Terrence Wallin just 27 seconds into the second period.
The River Hawks were still behind 1-0 after two, but had a 23-13 edge in shots and were able to win for the first time this season when trailing after two. UMass-Lowell had been 0-5 when behind after 40 minutes.
The River Hawks tied the game on a shot from the circle by Christian Folin at 4:30 of the third period and took the lead on a one-timer from Michael Colantone, who scored off a pass from Zack Kamrass at 14:53 of the third period.
NOTES: Clarkson will play the River Hawks again at 7 tonight at Cheel Arena. It is the final nonconference game of the season for the Golden Knights. ... Clarkson captain Ben Sexton played his first game since Nov. 17. He missed the last six games with a leg injury. Clarkson also added freshman forward T.J. Moor to the roster. Moor played for the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the U.S. Hockey League last season.