The University of Maine hockey team’s road woes continued on Saturday night.
Freshman goalie Hugo Ollas made 28 saves to register his first career shutout and Steven Jandric had a pair of goals and an assist as streaking Merrimack College dealt the Black Bears a 5-0 drubbing at Lawler Arena in North Andover, Mass.
Merrimack improved to 14-11-1 overall and 9-8 in Hockey East while notching its seventh win in its last eight games.
UMaine fell to 4-16-4 and 2-12-2 and is now 0-9-1 on the road this season. The Black Bears have been outscored 43-16 away from home.
It was the second consecutive night UMaine was shut out. Boston University blanked the Black Bears 4-0 on Friday night.
UMaine has been shut out seven times this season and is now averaging less than two goals per game (1.9).
Alex Jefferies’ power play goal 5:31 into the game, his fifth goal of the season, and Max Newton’s 11th 8:10 later gave the Warriors a 2-0 lead after the first 20 minutes.
UMaine has been outscored 14-1 in the first period of its last six road games.
Ben Brar expanded the lead with his 8th during a five-on–three power play in the second period and Jandric scored his fifth and sixth goals of the season in the third period.
Newton had three assists to go with his goal and Jefferies had two as did Declan Carlile.
“This was just like last night’s game. We just can’t play on the road for whatever reason and we have to change that mentality,” said UMaine first-year head coach Ben Barr.
“There is a [lack of] mental toughness aspect to it,” he said. “We’re able to crank it up at home. We’re making strides at home where we’re comfortable. But your focus on the road has to be even higher and we haven’t been able to do that yet.
“Merrimack is a real good team. They’re fast, they’re deep, they’re well-coached. We got it handed to us,” Barr said. “We turned over a lot of pucks. Credit to those guys, they put a lot of heat on our defense. We didn’t play detailed hockey.”
Sophomore goalie Victor Ostman made 39 saves for the Black Bears and Barr said he was happy with the way he played.
“We just have to take this and move on. We’re the only ones who can dig ourselves out of this,” Barr said.
Jefferies opened the scoring by one-timing a Jandric pass past Ostman from between the face-off circles. It appeared as though Jandric was going to shoot but, instead, he found Jefferies open in the slot.
Newton expanded the lead when he was left alone in the slot and was set up by Carlile and Logan Drevitch.
The Warriors had an extensive five-on-three in the middle period and took full advantage when Brar tipped a Carlile shot from the point behind Ostman.
The Warriors, who came into the game ranked 17th among 59 Division I teams on the power play with a 22 percent efficiency rate, went 2-for-3 with the man advantage.
The Black Bear power play went 0-for-5.
The 6-foot-8 Ollas, who is from Sweden, avenged a 6-5 overtime to loss to UMaine in Orono on Nov. 12. He allowed six goals on 32 shots that night.
Barr will lead his Black Bears to UMass next weekend. Barr was the associate head coach at UMass last season and the Minutemen won their first NCAA championship.
The teams will square off on Friday and Saturday nights at 7.