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Men's Ice Hockey Travels to New Hampshire to Conclude 2013 Regular Season
The University of Maine men's ice hockey team travels to New Hampshire for the final games of the 2012-2013 regular season. Maine currently sits in eighth place, a point ahead of Massachusetts, for the eighth and final playoff spot.
BLACK BEARS AND WILDCATS ON NBCSN: Friday's game between Maine and New Hampshire will be broadcast on the NBCSN. John Walton will call the play by play for the game, while Ken Hodge will provide color commentary.
PLAYOFF PICTURE: Maine currently sits in eighth place, one point ahead of Massachusetts, for the final playoff spot. The Black Bears are two points behind Vermont for seventh place. Massachusetts, however, holds the tiebreaker with the Black Bears. The two teams finished the season series 1-1-1. The second tiebreaker is wins in conference play. UMass currently has eight wins in league play, while the Black Bears have six.
A LOOK BACK: Maine skated to a 4-4 tie with Northeastern last Saturday night in the final home game of the season. Cody Ferriero gave the Huskies a 1-0 lead at 8:12 of the first period, but Maine answered back less than three minutes later when Ryan Lomberg (Richmond Hill, Ontario) got a pass from Joey Diamond (Long Beach, N.Y.) and snuck the puck between Northeastern netminder Chris Rawlings and the post. Adam Shemansky (Robbinsville, N.J.) put the Black Bears ahead 2-1 with a power play goal at 14:03 of the first from Stu Higgins (Troy, Mich.) and Ben Hutton (Prescott, Ontario). Northeastern regained the lead with a pair of power play goals by Colton Saucerman just 29 seconds apart. He scored his first goal with 12 seconds remaining in the first period and notched the second one just 17 seconds into the second frame. Steven Swavely (Reading, Pa.) then scored a power play goal of his own from Lomberg and Diamond at 4:13 to tie the game once again. Mike Cornell (Franklin, Mass.) had his shot from the point beat Rawlings at 5:12 of the second period as Maine gained the lead once again at 4-3. Steve Morra knotted the score at 4-4 just 32 seconds later and that it how the game would finish.
Maine outshot Northeastern 51-39 in the game. The Black Bears were 3-for-6 on the power play, while Northeastern finished 3-for-7. Maine goalie Martin Ouellette (St.-Hippolyte, Quebec) tied his career-high with 35 saves in the game. He moved to 8-10-7 on the season. Chris Rawlings made 13 saves in 25:12. He was replaced by Bryan Mountain who stopped 34 shots in 39:48.
SCOUTING THE BLACK BEARS: Maine is led by Diamond who has 12 goals and 10 assists for 22 points. He has four power play goals and a pair of game-winners. Devin Shore (Ajax, Ontario) has three goals and 18 assists for 21 points. Hutton has four goals and nine assists for 13 points. Connor Leen (Chester, N.Y.) and Lomberg each have seven goals and five assists for 12 points. Steven Swavely is adding five goals and seven assists for 12 points as well. Kyle Beattie has scored five goals and dished out six assists for 11 points. Mike Cornell and Jake Rutt (Scarborough, Maine) each have three goals and six assists for nine points. Mark Anthoine (Lewiston, Maine) is adding four goals and three assists for seven points, while Higgins has seven points on a goal and six assists. Jon Swavely (Reading, Pa.) is adding two goals and four assists for six points. Will Merchant (Eagan, Minn.) and Shemansky each have two goals and three assists for five points. Mark Nemec (Rouses Point, N.Y.) and Bill Norman (Stockholm, Sweden) each have two goals and two assists for four points. Brice O'Connor (Londonderry, N.H.) has dished out three assists for three points. Klas Leidermark (Gavle, Sweden) had a goal and an assist for two points. Nick Pryor (St. Paul, Minn.), Andrew Cerretani (Pelham, N.H.) and Ouellette each have a pair of assists on the season. Kyle Williams (Bowdoinham, Maine) has a goal, while Conor Riley (Massena, N.Y.) has dished out an assist.
Martin Ouellette has seen action in 26 games in goal. He is 8-10-7 with a 2.30 goals against average and a .919 save percentage. He has a pair of shutout on the season. Matt Morris (Ridgewood, N.J.) is 2-1-0 with a 2.83 goals against average and a .881 save percentage. Dan Sullivan (York, Pa.) is 0-6-0 with a 3.34 goals against average and a .898 save percentage.
HUTTON ON A ROLL: Maine rookie defenseman Ben Hutton ranks third on the team in scoring with four goals and nine assists for 13 points. He is currently in the midst of a five-game scoring streak. Hutton is Maine's top scoring defenseman. The last time a rookie was Maine's top scoring defenseman was during the 2004-05 season when Bret Tyler finished with six goals and 14 assists for 20 points.
THE POWER OF THE POWER PLAY: Maine scored a season-high three power play goals on Feb. 15 in its 3-3 tie against Boston University. The Black Bears equaled that on Saturday, March 2 against Northeastern. The game against BU was the first time this season that Maine has tallied three power play goals in a game. Prior to that, the last time Maine scored three or more power play goals in a game was in a 5-3 win over Boston University in the 2012 Hockey East semifinals when it tallied four. Six times last season Maine score three or more power play goals in a game. The Black Bears have 12 power play goals in their last nine games, going 12-for-44 during that time. Maine scored just one power play goal in its first nine games this season.
FIT TO BE TIED: Maine has skated to seven ties on the season, all coming in Hockey East play, which ties the school record for times in a season. The school record was set in 2000-01 and tied in 2001-02, 2004-05 and 2010-11.
SINGING THE ANTHEM: Sue Swavely, mother of Maine's Jon and Steven Swavely,sang the national anthem prior to last Saturday night's game. She also sang the anthem once during the 2011-2012 season.
GOING THE DISTANCE.... AND THEM SOME: Maine has gone to overtime in nine of its last 23 games. Maine has played nine overtime games on the season and is 1-1-7 in those nine games. Six of Maine's last eight home games have gone to overtime.
MAINE'S TOP SCORERS: Four of Maine's top six scorers are freshman. Devin Shore is second on the team with three goals and 18 assists for 21 points. Ben Hutton is third with 13 points. Ryan Lomberg and Steven Swavely are each adding 12 points.
NOT IN A RUTT: Sophomore Jake Rutt has 13 career points in 45 games. Seven of his 13 career points have been scored in Maine's last eight games. He has two goals and five assists over that span. Six of his points have come on the power play, while the seventh point came when Maine had Ouellette pulled in favor of an extra attacker.
PLAYED AS SCHEDULED: Maine's game at Vermont on Feb. 9 was one of the lone games in Hockey East that was played as scheduled due to winter storm Nemo. The Black Bears, who were scheduled to leave on Friday at noon for Vermont, left Thursday at 6 PM to beat the storm and made it to Vermont before the snow started.
DIAMOND MAINE'S ALL-TIME PENALTY LEADER: Joey Diamond has 415 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 55 minutes in the penalty box.
OUELLETTE NAMED HOCKEY EAST GOALTENDER OF THE MONTH: Ouellette was named the Hockey East Goaltender of the Month for January on Tuesday, Jan. 29. He finished 3-2-2 in the month with a 1.82 goals against average and a .937 save percentage. Ouellette backstopped Maine's weekend sweep of then #3 Boston College and also has a win over Mercyhurst. He recorded 1-1 ties at Northeastern and against Merrimack. He recorded 25 saves or more in five of Maine's seven games in January.
OUELLETTE SETS A CAREER-HIGH WITH 35 SAVES: Martin Ouellette had a career-high 35 saves in Maine's 4-3 win over UMass Lowell on Feb. 3. His previous career mark was 34 set at Boston College on Jan. 25. He tied that mark with 35 saves against Northeastern on March 2.
WINNING AT BOSTON COLLEGE: Maine's wins at Boston College the weekend of Jan. 25 and 26 were noteworthy for several reasons. It was the first time that Maine has won at Conte Forum since Oct. 28, 2005. It was the first time that Maine has swept a series at Boston College since Jan. 1993. Maine's sweep of the Eagles in 1993 was the last time that Boston College has been swept at home in a weekend series prior to the Black Bears accomplishing the feat.
DIAMOND NETS 50TH CAREER GOAL: Senior Joey Diamond scored his 50th career goal in Maine's game against Merrimack on Jan. 19. Diamond has 57 goals and 45 assists for 102 career points.
ROOKIES GETTING THE GAME-WINNING GOALS: Six of Maine's 10 game-winning goals on the season have been scored by freshmen. Ryan Lomberg has three, while Ben Hutton has a pair. Kyle Williams' lone goal on the season was a game-winner at UMass Lowell.