MAINE VS. WAYNE STATE
Time, site: Thursday, 7 p.m.; Saturday, 1 p.m.; Alfond Arena, Orono
Records: Wayne State 3-11-0; Maine 5-7
Series, last meeting: Maine leads 2-0; Maine 9-3 on Jan. 14
Key players: Maine – RW Karen Droog (7 goals, 4 assists), LW Jarin Sjogren (6 & 5), C Raffi Wolf (4 & 6), D Kelly Nelson (3 & 5), RW Cindy Biron (2 & 6), G Amanda Cronin (1-5, 2.54 goals-against average, .906 save percentage), G Dawn Froats (4-2, 2.29, .908); Wayne State – RW Kim Spaulding (2 & 4), C Katie Jones (2 & 4), D Kelly Meech (3 & 2), C Jamie Herod (2 & 3), RW Amy Peters (3 & 0), D Melissa Wenzel (0 & 2), G Anna VanderMarliere (3-10-0, 3.44, .899)
Outlook: The Warriors are in their second season of varsity existence after going 0-21 a year ago. Like most new programs, they have had trouble putting the puck in the net. They have scored only 18 goals in their 14 games. Seventeen of their 20 regulars are either freshmen or sophomores. Maine has lost four of its last five and seven of its last nine. The Bears have had their own problems putting the puck in the net, scoring just 15 times in their last nine games. Maine will be heavily favored but freshman VanderMarliere has put up some impressive numbers considering her team’s youth and the newness of the program. The longer the game stays close, the more confidence the Warriors will develop. Maine has to do a better job supporting the puck in the offensive zone. Maine beat Wayne State 11-0 and 9-3 a year ago in Orono. Wayne State is the only Division I women’s hockey program in Michigan. The Warriors are coached by former Boston College women’s coach Tom O’Malley.