Preview: Maine men’s hockey at Northeastern

Posted Feb. 23, 2012, at 8:14 p.m.

NO. 10 MAINE vs. NORTHEASTERN

Time, site: 7 p.m. Friday, Saturday, Matthews Arena, Boston

Records: Maine 18-10-3 (13-9-2 Hockey East), Northeastern 11-14-5 (7-12-4 HE)

Series, last meeting: Maine leads 53-37-16, Maine 6-3 on Oct. 9, 2011

Key players: Maine — LW Spencer Abbott (16 goals, 36 assists), C Brian Flynn (16 & 27), RW Joey Diamond (20 & 15), RW Matt Mangene (14 & 13), D Will O’Neill (1 & 25), C Kyle Beattie (5 & 20), G Dan Sullivan (17-7-3, 2.70 goals-against average, .904 save percentage); Northeastern — LW Ludwig Karlsson (9 & 15), RW Garrett Vermeersch (7 & 13), C Braden Pimm (9 & 10), RW Vinny Saponari (4 & 15), C Mike McLaughlin (5 & 10), D Anthony Bitetto (4 & 7), G Chris Rawlings (11-12-5, 2.56, .921)

Outlook: Maine is 5-1-1 in its last seven meetings with the Huskies. NU is 0-3-2 in its last five games including a pair of ties with Providence last weekend. NU has scored only eight goals in the five games and has been held to two goals or less 15 times. Rawlings made a career-high 47 saves in Saturday’s 2-2 tie. Matthews Arena is 5 feet wider than Maine’s Alfond Arena. Sullivan is 3-0 against Northeastern and Flynn has 16 points (5 & 11) in 10 career games. Abbott has 11 (6 & 5) in 10 games. The Huskies are a physical, hard-working team with a young defense corps and a goalie who can steal wins. NU will be without injured point-producer Cody Ferriero (9 & 6 in 17 games) and speedster Robbie Vrolyk (5 & 3 in 25 games) but LW Steve Quailer (8 & 14 in 22 games) could return after missing five games.

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