The University of Notre Dame hockey team showed up with its shiny gold helmets and ready to play.

The University of Maine showed up, not so ready.

The Fighting Irish jumped on Maine early and came away with a 3-2 win Friday night before 4,990 at Cross Insurance Arena.

The game was only 65 seconds old when Jack Jenkins slammed in a cross-ice pass for a 1-0 Fighting Irish lead.

Notre Dame took a 2-0 first-period lead, and made it 3-0 after two periods. Brendan Robbins scored for Maine at 12:42 of the third period. With the goalie pulled, Nolan Vesey scored with four seconds left.

“We didn’t come out playing well enough to start and that’s what obviously cost us the game,” Maine Coach Red Gendron said. “It’s great that we fought back, but we can’t be chasing a 3-0 deficit for most of the hockey game.”

Notre Dame, ranked 16th in the USCHO national poll, improved to 16-9-4, 9-5-3 in Hockey East. The Black Bears dropped to 10-16-3, 4-12-1.

Maine outshot the Irish 31-28, but Notre Dame goalie Cal Petersen made 29 saves. Maine’s Rob McGovern made 18 saves on 21 shots and was replaced by Matt Morris after the second period. Morris stopped all seven shots he saw.

The Irish got the jump on Maine in the first period, quickly creating a 2-on-1 break on a transition. Cal Burke crossed to Jenkins, who was alone outside the far post. He easily one-timed it in.

“We used our speed and got through the neutral zone quickly,” Notre Dame Coach Jeff Jackson said.

The Black Bears did not have a possession inside the Irish zone for 21/2 minutes.

A costly turnover and some nifty skating gave Notre Dame a 2-0 lead. Skating into the Irish zone, Cam Brown lost the puck off his stick, right to Anders Bjork, Notre Dame’s leading scorer. Bjork skated into Maine’s zone, backed up, twirled and avoided two Black Bears before firing from the left circle for a goal at 6:22.

“That’s his game, his speed and his puck skills,” Jackson said. “He’s certainly a dynamic player.”

And you may see him at TD Garden someday. Bjork, a junior, was drafted by the Boston Bruins in the fifth round of the 2014 NHL draft.

Being down 2-0 seemed to awaken the Black Bears, who responded with quality opportunities. But Petersen not only kept his position, he flashed his pads when needed.

“We had some chances,” Robbins said. “But we had some defensive-zone letdowns, which has kind of been our problem of late – getting down early and having to battle back.”

The shots after one period were 12-12. But Notre Dame got another early score in the second.

Andrew Oglevie sent a puck in, with McGovern screened. He never saw it as the puck reached the back of the net at 1:37 – and the Irish led 3-0.

Maine again tried to rally but could not solve Petersen.

Three penalties slowed the Black Bears, but they killed all of them, including 40 seconds of a 5-on-3.

The Black Bears were flying in the third – “They definitely elevated their game,” Jackson said – but the deficit was too much.

NOTES: The teams meet again at 7 p.m. Saturday at Alfond Arena in Orono. … The Black Bears remain in 11th place in the 12-team Hockey East, now six points behind the teams just ahead of them, Merrimack and Northeastern. … The largest cheer of the night came when Trevor Bates was shown on the video board. Bates, who played football at Maine, just returned from the Super Bowl, as a member of the New England Patriots practice squad.

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