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Mack’s Mailbag: Questions on goalies, football and the power play

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The Mailbag feature is exclusively for TMR VIP supporters. During the hockey season, this feature will run at least once per week (maybe more, depending on questions) and in the offseason, the mailbag will be posted whenever there are enough questions to fill up a post! To submit a question for the mailbag, email mackreportVIP@gmail.com

Q. Who do you think starts this weekend now that Pantano was pulled on Saturday and Vogler came in and looked strong? In my opinion, you have to give Vogler another chance at the job especially this early in the season, and he is a senior.

You can make a case for either guy at this point. Vogler came in and righted the ship on Saturday night, but I also don’t believe that Pantano played poorly. You look at the goals he allowed, and they were all near the net front and two of the three goals were on the power play. Remember, before this, he had allowed one goal (total) in two games.

So there’s a case to be made for Pantano and Vogler. Prior to Game 1 against Lake Superior, Scott Borek said that the goalie with the best save percentage in practice would start that weekend, and it could be as simple as that again.

Q. Will Merrimack have any games broadcast on NESN this season?

No television has been announced yet, that I’m aware of. But teams are still finalizing and announcing TV packages. UMass, for instance, just announced their package with Eleven Sports today.

Q. When Merrimack moves to Division I in football, who do you think they will play in non-conference games the first year?

Football scheduling is going to be the most difficult thing Merrimack has to manage (from a scheduling standpoint). There aren’t as many games, and football opponents are already locked in for several years in advance. The Northeast Conference was told, back in the spring, to begin holding dates for Merrimack beginning with next season, but I’m not sure how many had dates available to begin with.

Q. What have been your impressions of the power play? Does it look any different?

It doesn’t look terribly different, but it’s also the beginning of the season. Also, there was one coach who returned (Curtis Carr) so there aren’t necessarily wholesale changes happening. Scott Borek said this week that the penalty kill is almost exactly the same as they played last season.

It’s probably too early to give a good evaluation to the PP and PK, considering personnel has been different from game to game. Nothing about the units are settled yet.

About Mike McMahon

Mike McMahon is in his 13th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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