The University of Maine men's ice hockey team returns to action when it hosts Vermont this weekend for a Hockey East series. The Black Bears did not play last weekend, while Vermont dropped a pair of games to third-ranked Minnesota. Friday is "White Out Night". Fans are encouraged to wear white to the game. The first 2,000 fans will receive a free white out t-shirt courtesy of W.S. Emerson's and UCU.
ON CBSSN: Friday's game will be televised nationally on CBSSN. Eric Frede will call the play-by-play, while Dave Starman will provide color commentary. Shireen Saski will be the sideline reporter.
A LOOK BACK: Maine skated to a 2-2 tie with UMass on Friday, Nov. 16. Maine opened the scoring at 7:39 of the first period when Devin Shore (Ajax, Ontario) won a face-off back to Mark Nemec (Rouses Point, N.Y.), who had his shot find the back of the net. Maine added to its lead with a power play goal at 9:21 of the first period. Ben Hutton (Prescott, Ontario) had a shot and Jake Rutt (Scarborough, Maine) was able to collect the rebound, skate to the slot and fire the puck past UMass goalie Kevin Boyle.
UMass got on the scoreboard with a goal by Steven Guzzo at 14:54 of the second period. The Black Bears held the 2-1 lead until a minute remained in the game. With Boyle pulled in favor of an extra attacker, Conor Allen got the puck from Rocco Carzo and beat Maine goalie Martin Ouellette (St.-Hippolyte, Quebec). Neither team scored during the remainder of regulation or during the five minute overtime period.
Massachusetts outshot Maine 32-29 in the game. The Black Bears were 1-for-5 on the power play, while UMass finished 1-for-3.
Maine goalie Martin Ouellette finished the game with 30 saves and was named the game's second star. He moves to 1-3-0 on the season. Kevin Boyle stopped 27 shots for Massachusetts and moved to 3-2-1.
SCOUTING THE BLACK BEARS: Maine is led by Devin Shore who has a goal and five assists for six points. Connor Leen (Chester, N.Y.) leads the team in goals with three and has two assists for five points. Ben Hutton has a goal and four assists for five points as well. Joey Diamond (Long Beach, N.Y.) is adding a goal and three assists for four points. Mike Cornell and Stu Higgins (Troy, Mich.) have scored a goal and dished out a pair of assists for three points. Mark Nemec has a pair of goals for two points. Will Merchant (Eagan, Minn.), Mark Anthoine (Lewiston, Maine) and Steven Swavely (Reading, Mass.) all have a goal and an assist for two points. Nick Pryor and Ryan Lomberg each have a pair of assists on the season. Kyle Williams, Klas Leidermark (Gavle, Sweden), Adam Shemansky and Jake Rutt have all tallied a goal on the season, while Jon Swavely (Reading, Pa.), Brice O'Connor (Londonderry, N.H.) and Kyle Beattie (Avondale, Ariz.) are each chipping in with an assist.
artin Ouellette has seen action on five games in goal. He is 1-3-1 with a 2.59 goals against average and a .904 save percentage. Dan Sullivan is 0-6-0 with a 3.34 goals against average and a .898 save percentage. Matt Morris has seen action in three games this season. He is 1-0-0 with a 3.20 goals against average and a .842 save percentage.
FIRST CAREER GOAL: Five different Black Bears have tallied their first career goals this season:
Steven Swavely Oct. 6 vs. Quinnipiac
Will Merchant Nov. 2 vs. Boston College
Ben Hutton Nov. 9 at UMass Lowell
Devin Shore Nov. 10 at UMass Lowell
Kyle Williams Nov. 10 at UMass Lowell
Jake Rutt Nov. 16 vs. Massachusetts
MARK NEMEC NAMED SENIOR CLASS AWARD CANDIDATE: Mark Nemec has been named one of 20 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award. From these 20 candidates, a national media committee will select 10 finalists for the 2012-2013 Senior CLASS Award in February. Those 10 finalists will be placed on an official ballot for a national vote. The award honors seniors who are committed to staying in school and portraying the values of community, classroom, character and competition.
DIAMOND MAINE'S ALL-TIME PENALTY LEADER: Joey Diamond has 361 career penalty minutes, the most in Maine history. He surpassed Prestin Ryan (2001-04) with six penalty minutes in the game against Massachusetts on Nov. 16. In other words, Diamond has spent six hours and one minute in the penalty box.
ROOKIES PLAYING KEY ROLE: Maine's rookie class is accounting for 40 percent of the team's total offense. The freshmen have chipped in with 18 points in the first 12 games. Devin Shore leads the way with six points, while Ben Hutton is chipping in with five. Will Merchant, Steven Swavely and Ryan Lomberg each have two points, while Kyle Williams is chipping in with a point, but it was the game-winning goal on Nov. 10 against UMass Lowell. In that game, the Black Bears had two lines composed of all freshmen.
MAINE'S DEFENSE CHIPPING IN ON OFFENSE: In Maine's 4-3 win over UMass Lowell on Nov. 10, five of the six assists in the game were tallied by defensemen. Mike Cornell dished out a pair of assists, while Nick Pryor, Brice O'Connor and Ben Hutton each had one.
LEEN MEAN SCORING MACHINE: After scoring just a single goal in his rookie season, sophomore Connor Leen leads the Black Bears in goals this season with three. Leen and Mark Nemec are the lone Black Bears to have multiple goals this season. Maine has 17 goals on the season and they have been scored by 14 different players.
STARTING THREE STRAIGHT: Junior netminder Martin Ouellette has started the past three games for the Black Bears. It is just the second time in his career that he has got the start in three straight. The other time occurred during his freshman season.
100 GAMES PLATEAU: Maine has four different players who have seen action in 100 or more career games. Joey Diamond leads the way with 113 games played, while Mark Nemec has played in 111 games. Adam Shemansky has played in 109 games, while Mike Cornell has skated in 102.
CAREER-HIGH 41 SAVES: Maine goalie Dan Sullivan stopped a career high 41 shots on Sunday, Nov. 4 in Maine's 4-0 loss to New Hampshire. His previous career-high of 39 saves was set in the 2012 Hockey East title game and tied on Oct. 27 at Providence.
54 SHOTS ON GOAL: Maine recorded 54 shots on goal in its 4-3 win over Army on Oct. 13 in the 2012 Ice Breaker Tournament. It is the most shots on goal for the Black Bears since registering 61 shots against UMass in the Hockey East title game in 2004. Maine won that game in four overtimes.