MAINE vs. NO. 3 MERCYHURST
Time, site: Saturday, Sunday, 1 p.m., Alfond Arena, Orono
Records: Maine 2-0, Mercyhurst 2-0
Series, last meeting: Mercyhurst leads 2-0
Key players : Maine — C Brittany Dougherty (2 goals, 5 assists), LW Myriam Croussette (2 & 3), LW Danielle Ward (2 & 3), RW Jennie Gallo (2 & 2), D Chloe Tinkler (2 & 1), G Brittany Ott (1-0, 0.00 goals-against average, 1.000 save percentage), Candice Currier (1-0, 0.00, 1.000); Mercyhurst: C Meghan Agosta (2 & 4), C Vicki Bendus (3 & 2), RW Jesse Scanzano (2 & 2), C Kelley Steadman (2 & 2), RW Bailey Bram (1 & 1), D Pamela Zgoda (0 & 3), G Hillary Pattenden (2-0, 1.20, .939)
Outlook: Agosta was the Most Valuable Player in the Olympic Games in leading Canada to the gold medal. She had 9 goals and 6 assists and set an Olympic record with three hat tricks. Bendus won the Patty Kazmaier Award given to the nation’s best women’s player a year ago as she had 28 goals and 37 assists for the 30-3-3 NCAA semifinalists. Agosta is a three-time Kazmaier Hat Trick finalist (final three). Scanzano also had 65 points a year ago and RW Bailey Bram had 56. The Black Bears will have to receive phenomenal goaltending and play tenacious team defense just to stay close. Maine will also have to stay out of the penalty box. Mercyhurst operated at 23.9 percent on the power play last season without Agosta. This will be a valuable series for the Bears because this will probably be the best team they will play this season. The Black Bears will learn a lot about themselves. College Hockey America member Mercyhurst swept St. Cloud State 9-1, 6-1 last weekend. Maine swept Sacred Heart 7-0, 11-0 two weekends ago.