The University of Maine men's ice hockey team drops the puck on the 2012-2013 season when it hosts Quinnipiac on Saturday, Oct. 6. The Black Bears hosts New Brunswick in an exhibition game the following afternoon at 4 PM. Maine has a corps of veterans returning along with a talented rookie class for the upcoming campaign.
A LOOK AT THE RETURNING PLAYERS: Maine returns 17 letterwinners from the 2011-2012 season, including leading goal scorer Joey Diamond (Long Beach, N.Y.). Diamond, who finished fourth in the nation in goals per game, tallied 25 goals and dished out 22 assists for 47 points a year ago. Kyle Beattie (Avondale, Ariz.) scored a career high 27 points last season on six goals and 21 assists. Adam Shemansky (Robbinsville, N.J.) added 11 goals and 10 assists for 21 points. Mark Anthoine (Lewiston, Maine) scored 12 goals and added seven assists for 19 points. Nick Pryor (St. Paul, Minn.) tallied two goals and 11 assists for 13 points on defense. Fellow blueliners Brice O'Connor (Londonderry, N.H.) and Mike Cornell (Franklin, Mass.) chipped in with nine and eight points, respectively.
Dan Sullivan (York, Pa.) played in 36 games in goal. He finished 22-11-3 with a 2.59 goals against average and a .909 save percentage. Martin Ouellette (St.-Hippolyte, Quebec) saw action in nine games. He finished 1-3-0 with a 3.42 goals against average and a .871 save percentage.
WHAT'S NEW: Maine adds eight newcomers for the 2012-2013 season. Ben Hutton (Prescott, Ontario), Conor Riley (Massena, NY.) and Kyle Williams (Bowdoinham, Maine) join the Black Bears on defense. Also seeing action this year will be redshirt freshman Bill Norman (Stockholm, Sweden). Hutton, who was a fifth round draft choice of the Vancouver Canucks, played last season for the Nepean Raiders. Riley, who can play both forward and defense, was the EJHL Defensive Player of the Year in 2011-2012. Williams comes to the Black Bears via the New Hampshire Monarchs, where he helped lead the team to the 2012 EJHL title.
Among the forwards are Ryan Lomberg (Richmond Hill, Ontario) who led the Muskegon Lumberjacks in scoring last season. Will Merchant (Eagan, Minn.), who was captain for Eagan High School last year, recently played in the 2012 All-American Prospects game. Devin Shore (Ajax, Ontario), who was selected in the second round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, played for the Whitby Fury last year. He scored 58 points in 41 games last year. Steven Swavely (Reading, Pa.) was captain a year ago for the New Jersey Hitmen, where he averaged over a point a game.
Goalie Matt Morris (Ridgewood, N.J.) played for former Maine captain Jim Montgomery and the Dubuque Fighting Sioux. He finished 19-13-2 with a 2.58 goals against average and a .904 save percentage.
THREE NEW CAPTAINS FOR THE BLACK BEARS: Maine has three captains for the 2012-2013 season. Mike Cornell, Joey Diamond and Mark Nemec (Rouses Point, N.Y.) will each wear a C for the Black Bears this season.
PLAYING IN 100 GAMES: Mark Nemec is slated to play in his 100th career game on Saturday, Oct. 6 against Quinnipiac. He will become the second Black Bear to join the 100 games played plateau, joining teammate Joey Diamond. Diamond has seen action in 102 games in his career.
A PAIR OF BROTHERS: Maine has a pair of brothers on the team this season in Jon and Steven Swavely. Jon, a junior on the team, is joined by his younger brother, Steven. They become the 11th pair of brothers in Maine history joining: David and Jack Capuano, Chris and Peter Ferraro, Barrett and Chris Heisten, John and Keenan Hopson, Paul, Steve and Martin Kariya, Anders and Magnus Lundback, Mike and Matt Lundin, Jason and Shawn Mansoff, Jim and John Tortorella, Eric and Jason Weinrich.
ALL-AMERICAN PROSPECTS GAME: Will Merchant played in the inaugural All-American Prospects Game on Saturday, Sept. 29 in Buffalo, N.Y. The game featured the 40 top American prospects for the 2013 NHL Draft.
ANTHOINE, DIAMOND LEAD NATION IN POWER PLAY GOALS LAST SEASON: Mark Anthoine and Joey Diamond each scored 11 power play goals last season to tie for the national lead. Maine finished second as a team in power play percentage. In addition, then senior Spencer Abbott led the nation in points per game and assists per game.
DIAMOND SECOND AMONG ALL-TIME PENALTY LEADERS: Joey Diamond has 320 career penalty minutes, which ranks second most in Maine history. He is 39 penalty minutes shy of Prestin Ryan's school record of 359.
FEELING A DRAFT: A pair of Black Bears were selected in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Freshman Devin Shore was chosen in the Second Round, 61st overall, by the Dallas Stars. Classmate Ben Hutton was taken in the Fifth Round, 147th overall by the Vancouver Canucks.
TWENTY-TWO BLACK BEARS WERE HONORED ON SCHOLAR-ATHLETE DAY: Twenty-two Black Bears were honored on Sunday, Feb. 5 for their academics at Scholar-Athlete Day. Pietro Antonelli, Andrew Cerretani, Stu Higgins, Connor Leen, Bill Norman, John Parker and Jake Rutt were named *Rising Stars*, for achieving a 3.0 or better in their first semester at Maine. Mark Anthoine, Kyle Beattie, Brian Flynn, Klas Leidermark, Brice O'Connor, Nick Pryor, Dan Sullivan and Jon Swavely earned Bronze Medals. Mike Cornell, Ryan Hegarty and Adam Shemansky earned Silver Medals as they were honored for the second time. Spencer Abbott, Theo Andersson, Mark Nemec and Josh Seeley received Gold Medals as third time honorees.
STREAKING BLACK BEARS: Four returning Black Bears played in all 40 games last season. The following is the current consecutive games streak:
Kyle Beattie 58
Mark Anthoine 55
Adam Shemansky 44
Mark Nemec 42
ALFOND ARENA FEATURED IN WALL STREET JOURNAL ARTICLE: The Alfond Arena was one of several college hockey arenas featured in a Wall Street Journal article on Friday, Feb. 11, 2011. Alfond Arena was listed as having the best atmosphere in college hockey.
HOCKEY EAST ALL-ACADEMIC HONORS: Thirteen Black Bears were among a Hockey East league-record 100 student-athletes named to the league's 2011-12 All-Academic Team Each student-athlete achieved a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better in each of the two academic periods during which he was actively competing. The Black Bear list was highlighted by Theo Andersson and Mark Nemec, who were each honored for the third time in their careers. Mike Cornell, Brian Flynn, Brice O'Connor, Josh Seeley, Dan Sullivan and Jon Swavely were named to the Hockey East All-Academic Team for the second time in their careers. Mark Anthoine, Andrew Cerretani, Connor Leen, Bill Norman and Jake Rutt received recognition for the first time in their careers.
CLIMBING MT. KATAHDIN: The men's ice hockey team hiked Mt. Katahdin, Maine's largest mountain, prior to the start of the 2012-2013 season. The team did not make it to the top, however, as the weather was nasty and the rocks were icy. The mountain, located in northern Maine, is 5,267 feet high.
FROM THE MONARCHS TO THE BLACK BEARS: There is quite a pipeline from the New Hampshire Junior Monarchs to the University of Maine Black Bears these days. Maine has seven players on its roster who previously played for the NH Junior Monarchs. Kyle Beattie, Mike Cornell, Mark Nemec, Brice O'Connor, Jake Rutt, Adam Shemansky and Kyle Williams all played for the Monarchs in recent years.
FOLLOWING THE BLACK BEARS VIA SOCIAL MEDIA: You can now follow the Black Bears on social networking sites. You can follow MaineIceHockey and BlackBearNation on Twitter. You can also become a friend of the Black Bears on Facebook. You can also like Maine Black Bears. There is also a University of Maine YouTube page now with video on it. You can access it by logging onto www.YouTube.com/UMBlackBears. Maine also has a new video channel http://vimeo.com/channels/197225
MAINE HEAD COACH TIM WHITEHEAD: Maine head coach Tim Whitehead is in his 12th season at the helm of the Black Bears. He has a record of 239-152-46 at Maine and an overall record of 315-247-57 in his 15th season as a head coach. Whitehead earned the 2002 Spencer Penrose Trophy, given to the National Coach of the Year, after the Black Bears finished as national finalists. He was a 2004, 2006 and 2007 finalist for the Spencer Penrose Trophy as well.
BLACK BEAR STAFF RETURNS INTACT: Maine's coaching staff returns for the 2012-13 season. Bob Corkum and Dan Kerluke will serve as associate head coaches, while David Alexander will serve as the volunteer assistant. Corkum played at Maine from 1985-89. He then went on to have a 12-year, 720-game NHL career. Kerluke returns for his fifth season with the Black Bears. Kerluke was part of Maine's 1999 National Championship team. David Alexander will serve as a volunteer assistant coach with the Black Bears this season. A 2006 graduate of the University of New Brunswick, Alexander will work primarily with Maine's goaltenders.