ORONO — If the first period was Chase Pearson’s preseason, he was in midseason form by the start of the second.

The University of Maine captain scored two second-period goals – one short-handed and one on the power play – to spark the Black Bears to a season-opening 3-1 win over St. Lawrence on Friday night at Alfond Arena.

Ryan Smith also had a goal and an assist for Maine, which hosts the Saints again Saturday night.

Pearson, a draft pick of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings, did not play in the team’s exhibition game Monday.

“That was my first game in three months from the summer, so there was a little bit of an adjustment period for the first couple of shifts,” said Pearson, who needed 18 games to score his first goal last season and finished with just seven.

“I thought I found a rhythm. After about midway through the first I felt pretty good.”

Black Bears goalie Jeremy Swayman made 16 saves in the win, nine of them in the first period. Arthur Brey made 34 saves for St. Lawrence – a number of them from close range – to keep his team in the game in the third period.

“Good win for us against a gritty opponent,” Maine Coach Red Gendron said. “They played real, real hard – that was obvious – and we made some plays.”

Pearson scored Maine’s first goal while the Black Bears were short-handed 8:28 into the second. Smith sprung him on a breakaway, and Pearson shoveled the puck on net as he was being hauled down from behind.

The advantage grew to 2-0 when Smith corralled a puck off the left-wing boards, spun and floated a wrister that beat Brey five-hole with 9:14 left in the second.

St. Lawrence answered on the power play just over two minutes later when Philip Alftberg’s slapper from the right circle clanked off the crossbar and in.

Pearson built the Maine lead back up to two at 16:33, taking a pass from Jacob Schmidt-Svejstrup through the slot.