Unlike his two previous goals this season, Matt Miller scored late Saturday night for UNO.
His shorthanded goal in the third period helped lift the Mavericks to a 5-3 win over Maine at Baxter Arena. The victory in front of 2,919 boosted UNO to 3-1 and dropped the Black Bears to 0-2.
Miller, who scored the Mavs' first goal twice in last weekend's series against Lake Superior State, tallied the go-ahead goal with 18:08 left in the game. He outraced a defenseman and cut in front of goalie Victor Ostman, slipping the puck between the 6-foot-4 goalie's legs.
"He showed a lot of speed taking the puck to the net," Mavs coach Mike Gabinet said. "That was a big-time goal and a big-time momentum booster."
Miller, who leads the team in goals with three, credited teammate Martin Sundberg for setting up the goal.
"He made a great play along the wall," Miller said. "He chipped it out to the middle and I won the foot race to the net."
The Mavs added an insurance goal with seven minutes left when defenseman Kirby Proctor scored his first of the season. He took a pass from Tyler Weiss, moved in on Ostman and ripped a shot into the net.
Weiss, who had two assists, was voted the No. 1 star of the game.
"We battled hard," Weiss said. "Coach said it was a really mature win so it's nice coming out on top."
UNO led 2-1 after the first period on goals by Chayse Primeau and Kevin Conley, but Maine scored twice in the second to grab a 3-2 advantage.
Freshman Cameron Berg tied it, scoring on the power play with 6:05 left in the period. It was his second of the season.
UNO goalie Isaiah Saville let nothing get past him over the final half of the game. He finished with 24 saves to earn his third win.
"A couple of their goals were like ping pong shots," Gabinet said. "Isaiah showed maturity to not let those kind of things get into his head."
UNO returns to action Friday night at home against Alaska Fairbanks.
Three lessons we learned this weekend
1. This team is fun to watch
It remains to be seen how the Mavs will fare once rugged league play begins, but so far so good against respectable foes Lake Superior State and Maine. It seems like the team, which returned almost everyone, is playing with a confidence that has allowed it to bounce back from a discouraging season-opening overtime loss to win the next three.
2. Saville continues to excel
He showed up with impressive credentials as a freshman and has continued to get better each year. The junior, who already has a shutout this season, surrendered one goal Friday night in a 4-1 win and was good enough Saturday to post the 5-3 victory. He shut the door on the Black Bears over the second half of Saturday night's game, allowing no goals after the midway point of the second period.
3. Newcomers are contributing
Two players who have made immediate impacts are Minnesota graduate transfer Brannon McManus and freshman center Cameron Berg. McManus assisted on UNO's first two goals Saturday night while Berg scored his second of the season on the power play to tie it 3-3. It says something that both players already are listed on the Mavs' top line with team captain Kevin Conley.
Maine (0-2) ... 1 2 0 — 3
UNO (3-1) ... 2 1 2 — 5
First period: 1, UNO, Primeau 2 (Ward, McManus), power play, 2:11. 2, UM, Hebert (Poissant, Breazeale), 9:05. 3, UNO, Conley 1 (McManus, Scanlin), 10:50.
Second period: 4, UM, Dawe (Sirota, Renwick), power play, 3:49. 5, UM, Morrissey (Breazeale, Hebert), 9:57. 6, UNO, Berg 2 (Sullivan, Weiss), power play, 13:55.
Third period: 7, UNO, Miller 3 (Sundberg, Krenzen), shorthanded, 1:52. 8, UNO, Proctor 1 (Weiss), 13:00.
Shots on goal:
UM ... 11 7 9 — 27
UNO ... 6 12 11 — 29
Goalies: UM, Ostman (24 saves); UNO, Saville (24 saves).
Penalties: UM, 5-10; UNO, 7-14.
Power-play conversions: UM, 1-7; UNO, 2-5.
Three stars: 1, Tyler Weiss, UNO. 2, Matt Miller, UNO. 3, Brannon McManus, UNO.