ESTERO, Fla. -- Brian Flynn (Lynnfield, Mass.) and Spencer Abbott (Hamilton, Ontario) each had a goal and two assists to lead the University of Maine men's ice hockey team to a 6-1 victory over Clarkson in the first game of the Florida College Classic on Thursday afternoon in Estero, Fla. Maine will face the winner of the Cornell vs. UMass game in the Championship game on Friday night at 7:30 PM.
Maine struck first when Flynn scored his seven goal of the season at 8:25 of the first period when he received a pass from Abbott and shot the puck past Clarkson goalie Cody Rosen on the left goal post. Will O'Neill (Salem, Mass.) also assisted on the goal. Ryan Hegarty (Arlington, Mass.) extended Maine's lead to when his shot from the blueline found the upper corner of the net. Joey Diamond (Long Beach, N.Y.) and Flynn both assisted on the goal.
Maine made it 3-0 at 18:47 when Hegarty got the puck to Flynn. He passed to Abbott who shot from the top of the circle, beating Rosen for his 11th goal of the season at 18:47. The Black Bears took the 3-0 lead into the first intermission.
The Black Bears made it 4-0 at 7:30 of the second period with a goal in transition. Brice O'Connor (Londonderry, N.H.), who now has points in four straight games, began the play when he gained control of the puck in the defensive zone. He found Kyle Beattie (Avondale, Ariz.) who skated the puck up the ice. Adam Shemansky (Robbinsville, N.J.) finished the play with his fifth goal of the season.
Maine tallied a shorthanded goal at 10:09 when Mike Cornell (Franklin, Mass.) found Matt Mangene (Miller Place, N.Y.) who skated the puck up the ice. Mangene had a shot that Richie LeVeau saved, but the rebound when to Mark Anthoine (Lewiston, Maine) who fired the puck into the back of the net.
Maine took a 5-0 lead into the second intermission. The second period was marred with 26 penalties for 84 minutes.
Diamond added a power play goal at 3:18 of the third period as the Black Bears extended their lead to 6-0. O'Neill began the play and found Shemansky. He then passed to Diamond just outside the crease. Diamond capitalized with his 10th goal of the season.
Clarkson got on the board at 9:36 when Louke Oakley tipped a Alex Boak shot past Maine goalie Dan Sullivan (York, Pa.) to break up his shutout bid. Joe Zarbo also assisted on the goal.
Maine outshot Clarkson 36-19 in the game. The Black Bears finished 2-for-7 on the power play, while Clarkson was scoreless in seven chances.
Maine goalie Sullivan was impressive, stopped 18 of the 19 shots that he faced. He improves to 6-4-2 on the season. Cody Rosen made 15 saves in 27:30. He falls to 0-1-0 on the season. Richie LeVeau made 15 saves in 32:32.
Maine returns to action on Friday, Dec. 30 when it plays for the Florida College Classic title. Puck drop will be at 7:30 PM against either UMass or Cornell.