Junior goalie Thatcher Demko posted his fifth shutout in his last six starts, making 30 saves to lead the Boston College Eagles to a 3-0 victory over the punchless University of Maine Black Bears Friday night at Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.
San Diego native Demko, who is a second-round draft pick of Vancouver, made 23 saves through the first two periods including a couple of gems and made seven more in the third.
Boston College improved to 7-1 overall thanks to its sixth straight win. The Eagles, the stingiest team in Division I, are 2-0 in Hockey East and are off to their best defensive start in the program’s 94-year history.
Maine suffered its fifth straight loss and is 0-5-3 overall and 0-1 in Hockey East.
The teams will play again on at 1 p.m. Sunday at Conte Forum.
The Black Bears have already been shut out three times, and they have scored one goal or less six times in eight games.
Maine’s power play went 0-for-6, and it is 0-for-26 over the last six games.
Junior defenseman Steve Santini supplied the Eagles with the only goal they were to need at the 4:51 mark of the first period.
He took a pass from Colin White in the high slot, carried the puck to the right circle and beat Maine goalie Rob McGovern for his first goal of the season.
Matthew Gaudreau also earned an assist.
Santini’s father, Steve, played at the University of Maine, and the younger Santini is the grandson of Leigh and Donna Wadleigh, founders of the Governor’s Restaurant chain in Maine that began in Old Town.
McGovern kept the Black Bears within one when he saved White’s penalty shot with 8:04 remaining, but White gave the Eagles some valuable breathing room when he scored 2:44 later.
Santini and Scott Savage picked up assists.
Alex Tuch added an empty-netter.
Dan Renouf hit the post on a Maine power play with four minutes remaining.
McGovern wound up with 26 saves.
“We played one of our best games of the season,” said Maine coach Red Gendron. “But we didn’t play well enough to score goals. We’ve got to find ways to put the puck in the net.
“Our team executed pretty well. But you don’t get points in this league for good efforts or for playing really well. You need to score goals to win games,” added Gendron.
“They’re a very skilled team but, for the most part, we outworked them,” said Maine junior right wing Blaine Byron. “We had a lot of chances. Demko played great. We’ve got to find a way to get some dirty goals.”