BOSTON — The final three weekends were going to be make-or-break games for the University of Maine hockey team as it faced the top three Hockey East teams

After the Black Bears managed only one point in two games against Merrimack, there were doubts.

Those doubts have been erased.

After a 3-1 win over Boston University on Saturday night at Agganis Arena, the Black Bears have completed back-to-back weekend sweeps of Boston College and BU.

Maine got goals from John Parker and Nick Pryor, and then a Nick Mangene empty-netter, and goalie Dan Sullivan made 38 saves.

BU got few chances at rebounds as the Black Bears were swarming on defense.

The four-game winning steak improves Maine’s record to 14-8-3, 11-7-2 in Hockey East, putting it in third place, one point behind BU (15-8-1, 12-6-1) and Boston College.

Maine dominated the first period with puck control, shots and four power plays. Still, the Black Bears looked like they would get nothing out of it.

Only seconds remained in the period when BU killed off its fourth penalty. Maine’s third line created some havoc, sending shots and bodies to the net. The puck bounced to the right circle and Parker one-timed it over goalie Kieran Millan’s shoulder at 19:53.

Parker, a freshman, has been coming on recently, including a goal on Friday night.

Maine outshot the Terriers 21-8 in the first period.

BU tied it with its second power play on Garrett Noonan’s deflection at 2:41 of the second period.

The Terriers took some momentum from that and kept coming at the Black Bears.

But all it took was a faceoff to get the lead back to Maine.

Maine’s Joey Diamond won the face-off to Pryor, the defenseman with a thunderous slap shot. Pryor let one loose. The puck hit the back of the net and came right back out. The referee signaled a goal and, after a video review, he confirmed it.

It was the first collegiate goal for Pryor, a junior.

Maine led 2-1 at 6:00.

Sullivan held that lead for the rest of the period, stifling several BU opportunities.

He stopped a slap shot and then an instant rebound from Evan Rodrigues outside the crease.

Minutes later, he gathered in Chris Connolly’s shot from the slot into traffic.

Then on BU’s fourth power play, the Terriers pelted Sullivan with shots. He closed his pads in time to stop a redirect from the low slot, and then make a skate save after a flurry of chances.

The Terriers outshot Maine 19-6 in the second period.

In the third period, BU appeared to have a two-on-one with Ben Rosen skating into the right circle. Maine defenseman Brice O’Connor tied him up and knocked the puck away.

BU pulled its goalie with 1:27 left. Mangene was able to clear the puck to Stu Huggins, who charged toward the empty net, but was brought down by defenseman Adam Clendening – penalty, BU.

With a player in the box, BU still pulled Millan. Mangene got a steal and skated the puck to the empty net to clinch the win.


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