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Hockey East Saturday Night Recap: BU closes out back-and-forth OT affair in Maine; UVM, Lowell sweep

BU survived Maine's three-goal third period onslaught with an overtime victory, while Vermont and UMass-Lowell completed weekend sweeps.

Justin Soderberg

Boston University 5, Maine 4 (OT)

Junior Matt Nieto scored the game-winning goal with 3.8 seconds remaining in overtime as the Terriers held off Maine's furious third period rally and escaped with a win on Saturday night at Alfond Arena. After Maine's Ryan Lomberg scored on the power play at 17:10 of the first period, BU rattled off four straight goals, including a pair from Needham, Mass. native and freshman Danny O'Regan to take command. The Black Bears fought back to tie the game in the final period and capped off the surge with an extra-attacker goal from rookie Steven Swavely with 39 seconds remaining in regulation, but the Terriers used nearly all of the extra frame to get on the board and win the game, capturing three points from hostile Orono. In goal, freshman Sean Maguire recorded a career-high 40 saves as the Terriers improved to 14-12-2 and earned their 11th league win to square with BU for third in the Hockey East standings. BU returns to Agganis Arena next Friday for a pivotal match with UMass-Lowell, while Maine has a pair at UMass next weekend.

Vermont 3, Northeastern 1

Senior Chris McCarthy scored twice to pace the Catamount offense and rookie Brody Hoffman was tremendous with 29 more stops in goal as UVM earned a weekend sweep at Matthews Arena. The Catamounts have now won three straight games and four of their last five overall, thanks to McCarthy's strike at 8:24 of the third period that was the eventual game-winner. For the Huskies, junior Cody Ferriero scored his team-leading fifth power play goal of the season at 5:42 of the middle stanza, but that was all they could muster in defeat for fourth time in five February games. Senior Bryan Mountain earned his seventh start of the season and first since a Jan. 26 overtime loss at UMass-Lowell, making 26 stops between the pipes, despite yet having a victory to show for it this year. Vermont returns to Gutterson Fieldhouse for two next weekend with UNH, while Northeastern has a Nemo make-up game on Tuesday at UMass.

UMass-Lowell 3, Massachusetts 2

The River Hawks scored all three of their goals in the second period en route to earning a season sweep of the rival Minutemen, holding onto a 3-2 win on Saturday at Tsongas Center. Freshman Christian Folin, senior Riley Wetmore and junior Derek Arnold each scored for the home team, while rookie Connor Hellebuyck made 23 saves in his second straight start and eighth win in a row for Lowell. For the Minutemen, juniors Michael Pereira and Conor Sheary were the goal scorers, while sophomore Steve Mastalerz made 29 stops. Fellow junior and linemate Branden Gracel posted two assists to add to his team-best point mark of 29 on the year. With their sixth win in as many meetings against the Minutemen in the all-time series, the River Hawks now stand sixth in the league standings but just three points from a home-ice spot.

Joshua Kummins covers Hockey East for SB Nation. Follow him on Twitter @JoshuaKummins.