BIDDEFORD — The University of New England field hockey team has reached that spot again, the one that marked the end of the last two seasons.

This time it intends to get that one step further.

The Nor’easters, ranked 19th nationally in Division III field hockey, advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament Wednesday night with a 5-0 victory against the University of Maine at Farmington.

This is the third straight NCAA appearance for UNE (20-3) under Coach Danielle Collins. In each of the past two the Nor’easters advanced to the second round, only to be stopped short against a nationally ranked team.

This year’s second-round game will come at 11 a.m. Saturday at third-ranked Tufts (16-2).

But first came Farmington (13-5), which was held to two shots on goal.

“(Farmington) came out battling … The first round is one of those games where everyone has nerves to start,” said Collins, now 71-23 in her four years as coach.

“Once we scored that first goal it got a little easier to get in the rhythm of things.”

Collins feels this year’s team – the 20 wins is more than the 17 each of the last two teams had – is ready for a longer tournament run.

With a 101-19 goal differential, UNE has shown it can score as well as hold down opponents.

“(Farmington) prepared us for the next round. We wanted to play that fast-paced game and they were able to stay with us, and that’s exactly what Tufts is going to do as well,” Collins said.

The Nor’easters were led by freshman Bridget Cavanaugh’s two goals. Their second-leading scorer, Nicole Matarozzo, added two assists.

Cavanaugh, who mostly plays defense, moved up to midfield against the Beavers.

“In high school I played a lot of positions so I’m used to stepping up and taking the midfield position,” said Cavanaugh, a West Friendship, Maryland, native who notched the fourth and fifth goals for UNE.

“I like to do it and it’s fun. I had the opportunity during this game and I took advantage of it.”

The Beavers (13-5) were making their first NCAA appearance since 2007, when they lost in the first round for the second straight year.

Coach Cyndi Pratt thought that her team matched UNE’s effort, but falling behind early made it difficult to compete.

“Once the momentum got going their way they certainly kept it going,” said Pratt, who is in her 13th season. “They got a goal early so we were playing catch-up from there. It was (for) 65 minutes (that) we had to play from behind. We weren’t able to generate any offense to make it competitive after that.”

Marge Gardiner scored the first goal at 4:27 off a penalty corner. Matarozzo received the stroke and set up Gardiner with a behind-the-back pass.

Becky Zakorchemny doubled the lead 13 minutes later when she tipped in Olivia’s Madore’s shot from the left side of the box.

Farmington had a few chances early in the second half but UNE’s defense of Gardiner, Brooke Marshall and Sydney Liptak helped keep Holly Smith’s shutout intact.

A little more than six minutes into the second half, the Nor’easters scored again when Desirae LeBlanc deflected a Matarozzo shot past goalie Patty Smith (12 saves).

Nickyia Lovely and Jenessa Talarico, both with a shot on goal, led the Beavers.

Torrie Nightingale was strong on defense, breaking up a few fast-break chances.