— By

Staff Writer

BOSTON — From the start of the evening, little went right for the University of Maine hockey team.

The bus got caught in Boston’s rush-hour traffic. There was confusion about pregame television interviews. Then when the teams stepped on the ice, Maine’s biggest mistake was its first of the game.

The No. 12 Black Bears gave up a goal on the first shot of the game Friday night, then allowed Boston University to score five goals over the second and third periods in a 7-4 loss at Agganis Arena.

In the end, though, Maine wasn’t about to make excuses.

”The coaches told us we did not come out with any jam,” said Maine goalie Scott Darling (18 saves), whose team had its four-game win streak snapped. ”Seventy percent of the team didn’t show up, and you can’t take a night off in Hockey East and try to mail in a win. Especially against an offensively skilled team like BU.”

When it appeared the Black Bears (14-10-3, 11-7-2 Hockey East) pulled together some momentum, the Terriers (12-12-3, 9-9-2) answered right back.

BU scored two goals in the final four minutes of the second, ending a period in which the teams combined for five goals. The Terriers then added three in the third to earn their fifth win in six games.

”The five-on-three was the turning point,” BU Coach Jack Parker said. ”But the best part of the night is that we had answers every time. At 2-1, we had answers. At 4-3, we had answers.”

BU took a 1-0 lead less than two minutes into the game when Joe Pereira beat Maine defenseman Josh Van Dyk and found Ross Gaudet on the opposite side of the goal. Gaudet shot into an open net, the first shot of the game.

”I didn’t make the save and they got (going) right away,” Darling said. ”The first shot of the game is never good for the goalie. That kind of set the tone.”

Gaudet scored again less than five minutes into the second — a shot from an unusual angle off the left wing that beat Darling and banked off the cage.

The Black Bears were unable to convert on a five-on-three power play for 1:39, with Vinny Saponari (cross-checking at 8:35) and Luke Popko (hooking at 8:57). Maine put just one shot on goal on that opportunity. But 31 seconds after the penalty to Popko expired, Joey Diamond cut the lead to 2-1.

With 6:15 left, David deKastrozza tied it when he beat BU goalie Kieran Millan (18 saves) in a scramble in front of the BU goal. But with 3:57 left, goals by Saponari and Nick Bonino gave BU a 4-2 lead entering the third.

BU scored three goals in the third on Shawn Sirman, who relieved Darling before being injured after David Warsofsky gave the Terriers a 7-3 lead with 9:01 left.

”We fought back initially and tied it and I thought things were heading in the right direction but I just don’t think our focus was where it needed to be,” Maine Coach Tim Whitehead said.

NOTES: Whitehead said Sirman suffered a concussion when he gave up the second goal and would miss Saturday night’s game. Senior goalie Dave Wilson will drive down from Orono for the game.

Staff Writer Rachel Lenzi can be contacted at 791-6415 or at:

[email protected]