BOSTON — To hear the coaches talk after Friday’s game, both of their hockey teams lost.

Maine came out on the short end of a 5-3 contest against Northeastern before an announced crowd of 2,141 at Matthews Arena.

But the Black Bears pushed the Huskies all over the ice in the third period in search of the tying goal. They nearly had it a few times, notably when Brian Morgan rang a shot from the slot off of the post. Instead, Northeastern iced its sixth consecutive victory when Adam Gaudette gathered a puck between his own circles, turned and slid it all the way into an empty net with 31.8 seconds remaining.

That was just Northeastern’s sixth shot on goal in the period, none of them from close range.

“They were just heavier, they beat us to pucks, they wanted the pucks more, they were more determined to come up with pucks in those loose-puck battles, and we hung on at the end,” Northeastern Coach Jim Madigan groused.

“We’ve got a higher ceiling for ourselves and a higher expectation than what we performed our here.”

That may be bad news for Maine (8-21-6, 5-14-2 Hockey East), which lost any hope of hosting a first-round playoff series next weekend. The Black Bears gave the Huskies their best shot, earning a 35-26 advantage in shots on goal and becoming the first team to get three pucks past Northeastern goaltender Ryan Ruck since Jan. 2.

In the end, falling behind twice by two goals proved too much to overcome for a Maine team that is last in the league in scoring.

Northeastern (15-13-5, 9-8-4) has been the hottest team in Hockey East since the calendar turned to 2016, with a 12-1-2 record in that span. The Huskies have scored at least four goals in each game of their current winning streak.

Maine fell behind 2-0 midway through the opening period before banging home two rebound goals to tie the score. Andrew Tegeler got the first one after a terrific play started by center Cam Brown. Brown waited patiently in the Northeastern zone until Blaine Byron came free, putting the puck on Byron’s tape for a shot from the right circle that Ruck stopped. But it slid to Tegeler alone to the left of the crease to cut the lead to 2-1.

Will Merchant tied the score at 19:28 of the period when he pounced on the rebound of a Brendan Robbins shot and buried his team-leading 13th goal of the season.

Black Bears defensive miscues led to a pair of Huskies goals a minute apart in the second period to restore that two-goal lead.

“We need to gap better and we need to play the body. People have to have some awareness,” Maine Coach Red Gendron said. “They have all kinds of players with big numbers. When a guy (Kevin Roy) is playing on your third line who has 138 career points coming into the game, that’s a pretty good offensive hockey team, right? And they will get you to make mistakes at different times because they’re good players.”

Maine controlled play in the third period, pulling within 4-3 at 4:36 when Cedric Lacroix poked in the rebound of a Daniel Perez shot. The Black Bears put 15 shots on Ruck in the final 20 minutes.

“Most of our games we create plenty of chances, we don’t finish them off,” Gendron said. “We finished three off tonight and they were all good goals from our perspective, doing things the right way. Putting pucks on net, driving the net for rebounds, creating traffic in front.”

And it wasn’t enough. Northeastern is guaranteed to host a playoff series next weekend as the sixth seed in Hockey East. If the Huskies win the rematch with Maine at 7 p.m. Saturday, that opponent will again be the Black Bears.

Madigan indicated after Friday’s game that that wasn’t a matchup he’d relish.

“We were like a sieve in front of our goaltender. They were just going through us and we were turning pucks over,” he said.

“That’s the first time I think this year we’ve been controlled in our own zone like that.”