ORONO, Maine - The University of Maine men's ice hockey team was defeated 6-1 by Northeastern on Friday night at Alfond Arena. The Black Bears scored the first goal of the game, but three goals each in the second and third period gave the Huskies the win. Northeastern's Greg Costa had two goals, while Michel LÚveillÚ scored the only goal for Maine. Black Bears are now 15-7-2 overall and 8-7-1 in Hockey East while Northeastern is 9-11-4 overall and 6-9-4 in conference play.
In the first period, Josh Soares (Hamilton, Ontario) opened the game by hitting the post at 1:15, but then Northeastern had the next four shots on net. The Black Bears took the lead when Michel LÚveillÚ (Levis, Quebec) fired a shot from the point. Josh Soares was in front of the net to screen Northeastern goalie Brad Thiessen and Teddy Purcell (St. John's, Newfoundland) had an assist on the goal at 10:16. At the end of the first period, Northeastern had a twelve to seven lead on shots.
Northeastern struck quickly to open the second period as Jacques Perreault scored at 1:01 with an assist from Joe Vitale. Two minutes later, Chris Hahn (Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan) had a shot that got past Brad Thiessen, but stopped just inches from the goal line. The Huskies responded with a perfectly executed power play goal, as Steve Birnstill passed to Kyle Kraemer, who found Chad Costello open on the right side of the net for the score at 5:41. Greg Costa then gave Northeastern a 3-1 lead with a goal at 18:36 with an assist from Steve Birnstill. Northeastern again had a lead on shots, eleven to ten in the period.
The Huskies continued to carry the play in the third period, as Mike Morris scored an unassisted goal off a Maine turnover at 2:58. Following the goal, Ben Bishop (Des Peres, Mo.) was replaced in net by Dave Wilson (Caledon East, Ontario). At 4:28 in the period, Michel LÚveillÚ was called for a five minute boarding penalty and a game misconduct penalty on a hit on Northeastern's Joe Vitale. The Black Bears did an admirable job of killing the first 4:50 of the five minute penalty by not allowing a shot, but Randy Guzior scored with assists from Dennis McCauley and Jim Driscoll at 9:18 to take a 5-1 lead. Northeastern wrapped up the scoring with a goal by Greg Costa at 12:16, with an assist by Jimmy Russo. Maine did not give up, as they continued to take shots late in the period and had a 13 to seven lead on shots in the period.
In goal, Maine's Ben Bishop had 21 saves and four goals against, while Dave Wilson had three saves and two goals against. For Northeastern, Brad Thiessen had one goal against and 29 saves. Maine had 6 penalties for 23 minutes and Northeastern had 3 penalties for 6 minutes. On power plays, Maine was 0-2 and Northeastern was 2-5. For the game, Maine and Northeastern both had 30 shots.
It marked the first time since February 5, 1998 that the Huskies have beaten the Black Bears at Alfond Arena. Maine has now lost three straight at Alfond Arena for a 5-5-0 record this season. Maine is also 0-6-0 on the season when trailing after two periods. The goal by Michel LÚveillÚ was his first since December 9, 2006 against Northeastern, a stretch of nine games.
The Black Bears wrap-up the weekend series against Northeastern on Saturday at 7:00 pm. The game will be televised by WABI-TV and online at www.watchmainesports.com. For tickets or more information on University of Maine athletics, visit www.GoBlackBears.com or call 581-BEAR.