For the past two winters, Shawn St. Amant has spent much of the season in the American Hockey League and finished it hoisting the Kelly Cup as an ECHL champion.

The Mariners are hoping he can keep that streak alive.

On Wednesday night, St. Amant ended his second week in Maine with a hat trick to lead the Mariners to a 6-3 victory over the Orlando Solar Bears before a crowd of 1,924 at Cross Insurance Arena.

“I’m trying to bring my experience from the past two years of winning,” said St. Amant, who was sent down from AHL Hartford at the beginning of the month. “The details are so important sometimes. I’m just trying to bring that here.”

The Mariners (6-5-0-1) have won four in a row and have earned at least one point in all five November contests.

St. Amant, who won in Colorado the previous two ECHL seasons after signing with San Antonio of the AHL, scored twice on power plays Wednesday, each time after the Solar Bears had pulled within a goal. He also scored late in the first period to give the Mariners a 3-1 lead.

With four goals on the season, St. Amant is Maine’s leading scorer.

“He’s got a lot of experience and he’s only 21 years old, so he’s still really young for this league,” Mariners Coach Riley Armstrong said. “I think his first couple of games weren’t so great, but he’s starting to find his stride. He looks more comfortable and is playing a lot more minutes than he was playing in Hartford.”

The Mariners had six power plays but mustered only one shot on goal – a long-range slap shot – on their first two chances. After that, they converted twice from close range with St. Amant tipping in a shot and chipping another over goalie Martin Ouellette.

“I think in the beginning, we were trying to be too fancy, trying to pass across,” St. Amant said. “Sometimes, you just have to keep it simple: Shoot the puck at the net and get some rebounds.”

Orlando’s only power play came late in the third while trailing 5-3 and resulted in a 175-foot short-handed goal by Brycen Martin after the Solar Bears pulled Ouellette.

Ouellette, who played four years at the University of Maine until 2014, finished with 36 saves. Maine’s Brandon Halverson made 28 saves, none bigger than his ambush of a three-on-one trailer midway through the second to preserve a one-goal lead.

“He played awesome tonight,” Armstrong said. “He made some really big saves and kept us in the game.”

Dwyer Tschantz and Dawson Leedahl also scored for the Mariners, who never trailed. Terrence Wallin and Scott Savage each had two assists.

The Mariners head to Ontario against the Brampton Beast for the next two games.

Glenn Jordan can be contacted at 791-6425 or:

[email protected]

Twitter: GlennJordanPPH

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