ORONO, Maine — The University of Maine hockey team will be hosting a best-of-three first-round series in the Hockey East playoffs in two weekends if it doesn’t secure a top five finish and earn a first-round bye.

But the Black Bears’ Alfond Arena hasn’t exactly been home sweet home of late as Boston College sophomore goalie Joe Woll made 33 saves, including 15 of the Grade-A (high-percentage) variety, and the opportunistic Eagles spoiled Senior Night by shutting out the Black Bears 5-0 before a sellout crowd of 5,165 on Saturday night.

The Hockey East-leading Eagles improved to 16-13-3 overall and 16-6 in Hockey East, while the Black Bears fell to 16-12-4 and 10-9-3, respectively.

The Black Bears are now 1-2-2 in their last five home games and concluded the regular season 6-6-3 at Alfond Arena.

UMaine visits Boston for a pair next weekend to close out the regular season. The Black Bears are 9-4-1 on the road.

UMaine head coach Red Gendron downplayed the recent struggles at home.

“The bottom line is whether we’re at home or on the road, there is a certain formula you have to follow. We do the same thing,” Gendron said. “It’s the function of us executing the way we play, and we didn’t do a very good job of playing our game tonight. If we had played this way at Boston College, we would have lost 5-0 down there, too.”

For Toronto third-round draft pick Woll, who helped the United States earn a bronze medal in the World Junior Championships in Buffalo during Christmas break, it was his first shutout of the season and second of his career.

UMaine had a pair of three-on-one rushes and one two-on-one but failed to severely test Woll on any of them as he had to make just a pair of routine saves and, on the other chance, a BC defenseman was able to get his stick on a pass intended for Nolan Vesey from Tim Doherty.

“If it hadn’t hit the defenseman’s stick, it would have been a tap-in for me,” Vesey said. “We didn’t get any bounces tonight.”

“We didn’t execute for most of the game,” Gendron said. “We’d shoot into [Woll’s] belly or we’d miss the net. We didn’t give ourselves a chance to score.

“But give credit to the Woll kid. He played a great game. He made saves when he needed to,” Gendron said. “Credit to Boston College. They deserved to win.”

“They had a lot of chances but Joe Woll was one step past terrific tonight. This was a big step forward for our team” said BC coach Jerry York, who picked up his 1,064th career win and called it one of his team’s best games of the season.

The Eagles jumped out to a 1-0- lead on a Casey Fitzgerald wrist shot from the point just 2:47 into the game, and Julius Mattila expanded the lead 7:42 later.

Zach Walker scored 8:02 into the second period and Logan Hutsko made it 4-0 just 18 seconds into the third period, prompting Gendron to pull freshman goalie Jeremy Swayman in favor of junior Rob McGovern.

Graham McPhee added a shorthanded empty-net goal.

Defenseman Fitzgerald opened the scoring when he took a pass from Michael Karow at the right point and sailed a wrister that beat the screened Swayman to the short side.

Mattila made it 2-0 when he shoveled home the rebound of a David Cotton shot after Hutsko set up Cotton with a pass from behind the net.

Walker extended the lead when he one-timed a Ron Greco pass from behind the net past Swayman. Walker had skated into the middle of the slot.

Hutsko made it 4-0 with a wrister from the slot that sailed past Swayman’s blocker into the far corner.

“We had our fair share of chances but we didn’t capitalize,” UMaine sophomore center and co-captain Chase Pearson said. “We didn’t play to our full potential and when you don’t play to your potential against a good team like BC, they’ll walk all over us like they did tonight.”

“We played well in the first period but we found ourselves down 2-0,” Gendron said. “I didn’t like the way we played in the second period. We didn’t have the kind of push back I would have hoped for.”

Swayman finished with 20 saves on 24 shots, and McGovern stopped all eight shots he faced.

Seniors Vesey, injured defenseman Mark Hamilton, winger Malcolm Hayes and center Cedric Lacroix were honored before the game and addressed the crowd after the game. Hayes has another year of eligibility because of a medical redshirt year.

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