The No. 20 Black Bears faced off against the lowly River Hawks, who made their America East Conference debut. Maine extended its success in the all-time series by winning the affair 3-2, bringing the head-to-head record to 8-1-1. Maine improved to 8-3 on the season, while the University of Massachusetts Lowell dropped to 3-6.
Maine opened the scoring just 3:06 into the game, as third-year forward Madison Cummings put one in for the 1-0 advantage, assisted by fourth-year midfielder Sydney Veljacic. This was Cummings’ 11th goal on the season.
The River Hawks would tie it up only two minutes later at 5:11, as third-year forward Christa Doiron scored, assisted by first-year forward Anouk Lalande. This was Doiron’s fifth goal on the season.
The Black Bears took the lead right back at 9:34 of the half as second-year back Samantha Wagg scored, assisted by second-year back Ella Mosky and midfielder Libby Riedl. This was Wagg’s seventh goal on the season.
Maine would see their lead vanish quickly once again just 22 seconds later at 9:56, as second-year forward Torrie Huk scored to tie it at 2, assisted by fourth-year forward Eleonore Agneessens. This was Huk’s seventh goal on the season.
About six minutes later at 15:57 of the first half, fourth-year forward Danielle Aviani scored to regain the one-goal lead for the Black Bears, making it 3-2. This was Aviani’s fourth goal on the season.
Maine went into halftime with the slim lead despite controlling the ball for most of the half, finishing with 14 shots and eight on goal. UMass Lowell finished with just two shots, both getting in the goal.
Redshirt third-year goalkeeper Emily Corbett started for the Black Bears, while third-year goalie Kelsey Federico started for the River Hawks. Federico made five saves in the first frame.
To start the second half, Maine Head Coach Josette Babineau returned back to old habits of switching her goalies for the second half, slating in redshirt third-year goaltender Emma Cochran. UMass Lowell made the same move, as Head Coach Shannon Hlebichuk inserted first-year goalie Eva Berkhout.
Just over a minute into the second half, UMass Lowell decided to burn their timeout, surprisingly while on defense and not on offense.
With the only goal to occur in the second half at 48:13, Veljacic was awarded a penalty stroke shot and used it to her advantage, capitalizing on the opportunity to give Maine a 4-2 lead. This was Veljacic’s second goal on the season.
No more scoring came in the second frame even though both teams showed much offensive effort. Maine finished the half with 12 shots and eight on goal, while UMass Lowell had seven shots with three on goal. Cochran made three saves in the half and Berkhout made six. The River Hawks also added a defensive save from third-year back Kelly Mankowich.
The University of Massachusetts Lowell played next on Sunday, Oct. 2 on the road 12 p.m. against Sacred Heart University.
Maine Falls Short Against Albany
No. 20 Maine played a tough Albany team, who was undefeated at home, coming into this matchup. The Black Bears were unable to turn that trend around, as the Great Danes shut them down for a 3-1 victory. Maine improved to 9-3 on the season, while Albany dropped to 6-5.
It was a defensive battle for the majority of the first half before someone found the goal and unfortunately it was not a member of the Black Bears. Fourth-year midfielder Paula Heuser scored at 21:47 to give Albany a 1-0 lead, which was assisted by second-year midfielder Frederike Helmke. This was Heuser’s ninth goal on the season.
The Great Danes didn’t allow Maine to tie it up and instead doubled their lead to 2-0 as they saw Heuser score her second goal of the game at 32:12. This was Heuser’s 10th goal on the season.
Maine was blanked in the first half, finishing with three shots that were all on goal, while Albany had eight shots with four on goal.
Cochran started for the Black Bears, while fourth-year goalie Maxi Primus started for the Great Danes. Cochran made two saves in the half and Primus made three.
Babineau made the usual move to insert the other of her goalkeepers, Corbett, for the second half of the competition.
The Great Danes added to their lead at 54:22 of the game, as redshirt third-year forward Molly Mariano scored to make it 3-0, assisted by third-year forward Kelsey Briddell. This was Mariano’s fifth goal on the season.
The Black Bears would eventually find the back of the net, as first-year forward Brianna Ricker scored at 58:23 of the game to cut the deficit to two goals. This was Ricker’s fourth goal on the season.
Albany used their timeout at 62:37 to develop a steady game plan to keep Maine from finding another opportunity to score and get back in the game.
Maine was not able to climb back from being down three goals, losing another close and competitive game. The Black Bears finished the second half with five shots with two on goal, while the Great Danes had five shots with four on goal.
Corbett made two saves in the half, while Primus made one. Wagg also added a defensive save for Maine.
The Black Bears seek to get revenge on the Great Danes when the teams meet later in the season in Orono on Friday, Oct. 21 at 3 p.m. With several conference games coming up in the schedule, Maine has to play their best in order to get a good standing before the playoffs begin.
Maine returns to action on Sunday, Oct. 9 on the road at 1 p.m. against the University of New Hampshire. Albany plays again next on Friday, Oct. 7 at home at 2 p.m. against the University of Vermont.