Maine Hockey Journal

Freshman Ouellette stuns Providence for his first shutout

Freshman goaltender Martin Ouellette made 32 saves in a stellar performance as the University of Maine men’s ice hockey team handed Providence College their first home loss of the season, 5-0, in the back half of a weekend set at Schneider Arena.

On Friday, the Black Bears thought they might have earned the victory in the dying second, but tonight they removed all doubt as they completely dismantled the Friars.

The Black Bears and Friars played a back-and-forth game in the first period with both sides having quality scoring chances and were tough defensively.

Maine found a bit of luck for the first goal of the game as Friars’ forward Tim Schaller went to help his goaltender Alex Beaudry and, while the play was continuing in front of the net, Schaller deflected the puck to put it in his own net.

The goal was given to Joey Diamond increasing his total to eight on the season and would count as the eventual game winner.

After the goal, the period began to tilt in Maine’s favor offensively, but Beaudry showed no signs of backing down. However, defensively, Providence began to let their guards down, allowing the Black Bears to continue keeping the pucks flying toward Beaudry.

For his effort, he made 16 saves in the first period on top of his 23 of the night in the losing effort.

In the second period, the Friars picked up their offensive tempo by attacking the Black Bears’ net with more authority, and by creating better chances with the puck.

This time, the period belonged to Ouellette, who was starting in his first game since October when he faced Connecticut.

The young goaltender stood strong and looked very confident as the Friars kept applying the offensive pressure by firing shot after shot on the netminder.

Spencer Abbott made it 2-0 for Maine as he tracked the puck out of midair, gaining control over as he moved quickly toward the night, beating Beaudry with a backhander at the 17:02 mark of the second period. Brain Flynn and Josh Van Dyk made their presence known on the play as they each picked up the assist.

It only took forward Gustav Nyquist 38 seconds into the third period to extend Maine’s lead to 3-0 as he ripped it by Beaudry.

In the third period, the game began to deflate in a big way for the Friars as the Black Bears struck again.

Brain Flynn skating down the ice toward the net after receiving a pass from Abbott, snapped a shot by Beaudry, who set up to block the shot, but beat glove side to put the game out of reach at the 5:55 mark of the final period.

Adding insult to injury the Black Bears refused to let off the gas as Kyle Beatie grabbed a rebound off the backboards and quickly slapped it by Beaudry to make the final score of the game, 5-0.

With the 5-0 win, Maine walked away from the weekend earning three points toward the Hockey East standings and being the first to defeat the Friars in Schneider Arena.

Martin Ouellette saved 32 shots to earn his first colligate shutout in only his second start of his brief career with the Black Bears.

Spencer Abbott had a fantastic series against the Friars scoring three goals and picking up three assists for six points, which should give him consideration for Hockey East Player of the Week.

Maine will be able to travel back to Orono to play in friendly Alfond Arena against their rival the University of New Hampshire on next Friday, followed by the UMass-Amherst on Sunday.

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