WATERVILLE – The Thornton Academy boys’ hockey team has 14 seniors, veterans from last season’s state championship run.

Waterville, on the other hand, is a team loaded with underclassman, including eight sophomores.

That experience gap was evident throughout Saturday night’s game at Colby College’s Alfond Rink.

Thornton capitalized on a flurry of Waterville penalties in the first period, scoring three power-play goals in 31/2 minutes on the way to a 10-1 victory.

Thornton improved to 3-0 and dropped Waterville to 0-3.

“We just came out there and got stuff going right off the get-go with the power play,” Thornton defenseman Tyler Danley said.

“We’ve got a lot of returning players, a lot of experience from the great year last year, and hopefully it rolls into this year.”

Dalton Denis of Waterville was called for hooking after 5:48, and less than a minute later, Aaron Saucier took a double minor for holding and contact to the head.

The Panthers were also issued a bench minor when Coach Dennis Martin argued the calls.

Robert Downing gave the Trojans a 1-0 lead at 7:06, and Nick Chen’s goal at 9:01 made it 2-0.

Downing scored again with one second left on the bench minor penalty, swiping a backhand past goalie Cody Thibodeau for Thornton’s third power-play goal.

C.J. Maksut added a goal with a wrister from between the circles at 11:01, and the Trojans led 4-0 after the first period.

“We got to the point in the first period, the penalties came back to haunt us. We lost our heads. Everything rolled from there,” Martin said.

“They’re a good team, obviously the best team we’re going to see. They capitalized on the chances.”

Chen had three goals and two assists, and Andrew Carignan added a goal and three assists for Thornton.

“We played right to the end of the game. We rolled all four lines, and we just kept pounding them every line we had,” Danley said.

Waterville’s goal came at 4:39 of the second when J.T. Whitten scored on a power play.

Joe Ferrante and Avery Kibler combined for 18 saves for the Trojans. Thibodeau made 20 saves and Dakota Gendreau had two for Waterville.