ORONO, Me. — Devin Shore looked like he had a game-winning goal for Maine in the third period, but the goal was disallowed after a review determined that Ryan Lomberg interfered with Boston University goaltender Matt O’Connor.
Neither team could capitalize on the call and Maine and BU tied 3-3.
“It was a crazy game,” said Maine coach Tim Whitehead. “I really like how we fought back and took the lead. This game had a little bit of everything. The crowd was into it, both goalies made great saves, a lot of physical play, but I really just wish we had two points.”
On the goal that was waved off, O’Connor said it was a good call by the officials.
“There was a lot of contact and traffic in front,” he said. “A lot of players were in the crease. It was a judgment call and it was nice to have this one go my way.”
After a relatively quiet start of the game, BU went on the offensive and put two goals past Maine goaltender Martin Ouellette 10 seconds apart.
With 8:48 expired in the first period, Terrier forward Evan Rodrigues assisted fellow forward Matt Nieto in scoring his eighth goal of the season to put BU up 1-0.
On the ensuing faceoff, the Black Bears turned the puck over in their own zone and BU wasted no time taking advantage of the stolen puck. BU forward Cason Hohmann assisted forward Wade Megan to put the Terriers up 2-0.
Maine went on the power play twice in the first period and used its second opportunity to cut into the BU lead.
With 17:47 played in the first period, BU forward Sam Kurker committed a hooking penalty to set up a five-on-four. Lomberg assisted Steven Swavely 39 seconds later to help the Black Bears to within one of the Terriers.
Matt Lane’s tripping penalty at the end of the period gave Maine a power-play opportunity to start the second period and would mark the opening of the Black Bears’ offensive floodgates and BU’s discipline problems.
Just over a minute into the second period, Swavely scored his second power-play goal of the game after being assisted by Shore and Joey Diamond to tie the game at two goals apiece.
“We always like to get a point, but at the end of the day, two points is always better,” Swavely said. “Just getting pucks in the net. Things happen once you start shooting more pucks towards the net. It’s a huge monkey off my back to get that monkey off my back. I feel the way we played was really good.”
Maine defenseman Mark Nemec and Kurker made the game a four-on-four matchup only a couple minutes after Swavely’s second goal and Megan made it a four-on-three advantage for the Black Bears 4:53 into the second period after being called for a roughing penalty that resulted in a double minor.
Diamond scored his 11th goal of the season with Swavely returning the favor with the assist alongside Shore to put the Black Bears up 3-2 5:27 into the second period.
“Their power-play goals, we had different players break down but it was the same exact mistake made both times,” BU coach Jack Parker said.
After being outshot 13-11 in the first period, Maine allowed only four Terrier shots on goal while recording 12 of their own, most coming while on a power play during one of four BU penalties in the period.
After three unanswered goals by the Black Bears, the Terriers used a power-play goal of their own to knot the game up.
Bill Norman provided BU a five-on-four advantage by being called for slashing 6:13 into the third period. Rodrigues tallied his second goal assist of the night alongside Nieto to help defenseman Ahti Oksanen score the equalizer.
Diamond and Shore looked to team up once again late on in the third period. Diamond passed off the puck to Shore who was standing on the right side faceoff circle and he fired the puck past O’Connor with under seven minutes to play.
After a review, the referees waved off what would have been Maine’s fourth power-play goal of the night.
“That was tough,” said Shore. “Our power play was on all night. The goal went in, but I respect the decision. It will make the next one that much sweeter.”
“I was just fighting to see the puck,” added O’Connor. “There was a bit of contact and the ref will get a lot of criticism for making the call. There was just a jersey in my face and I couldn’t see the puck.”
The score remained 3-3 at the end of regulation as Maine went into a scenario it has seen time and time again this year – falling behind early, catching up, and not getting a game-winning goal.
BU forward Ben Rosen came the closest to scoring with 45 seconds to play in overtime.
“I like the way we started, I like the way we finished and I like the way we competed,” said Parker. “I didn’t like the penalties, especially in the second period, but I will take the one point for sure. They played well. We took a step in the right direction after almost shooting ourselves in the foot.”