NO. 9 MAINE vs. PROVIDENCE COLLEGE
Time, site: Friday, Saturday, 7 p.m., Schneider Arena, Providence, R.I.
Records: Maine 6-3-3 (4-2-1 Hockey East); Providence 6-5-3 (3-3-3 HE)
Series, last meeting: Maine leads 60-37-5, PC 3-2 on Jan. 16
Key players: Maine — LW Spencer Abbott (8 goals, 8 assists), RW Gustav Nyquist (4 & 11), C Robby Dee (5 & 7), D Josh Van Dyk (0 & 7), G Dan Sullivan (4-3-1, 2.62 goals-against average, .885 save percentage), G Shawn Sirman (2-0-1, 2.55, .906), G Martin Ouellette (0-0-1, 2.77, .833); PC — C Kyle MacKinnon (9 & 5), LW Ian O'Connor (3 & 9), C Tim Shaller (3 & 6), RW Ben Farrer (3 & 5), D Eric Baier (2 & 3), D Daniel New (0 & 5), G Alex Beaudry (5-5-3, 2.85, .908)
Outlook: The rejuvenated Friars are 5-1-2 in their last eight games and are 3-0-2 at home. MacKinnon, who centers the all-senior No. 1 line between O'Connor and Farrer, has 4 & 4 in his last four games and Farrer's eight points are already a career single-season high. PC returned nine of its top 10 scorers off last year's 10-20-4 team. Both coaches feel it is imperative that they stay out of the penalty box even though Maine is in a 3-for-35 power-play drought and PC's 9.2 PP percent is 56th among 58 teams. Maine is 5-1-1 in the last seven meetings. The teams haven't combined for more than five goals in any of the last eight meetings. Maine continues to be without injured high-scoring defensemen Will O'Neill and Jeff Dimmen and RW Joey Diamond (ankle) is questionable. Maine needs to get off to a good start and get traffic in front of Beaudry.