LEWISTON — Lewiston dropped the puck on its season with two goals in the first 70 seconds, then got a quick reminder how much a fast start really means to the big picture.
With that message received, the Blue Devils controlled the final two periods for a 7-2 win over Falmouth in their 2012 debut at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.
Erica Lemieux notched four goals and Natalie Rousseau added another for Lewiston. Brianna Lajoie stopped 29 shots in net.
"We're mucking it through a little bit, and they know we have to fix some stuff," Lewiston coach Ron Dumont said. "It's the first game and I'm sure there was a little bit of nerves. If it was the 10th game of the year, I'd be a little bit concerned, but for No. 1, we'll take it."
Rousseau opened the scoring with a breakaway goal just 19 seconds into the game. Lemieux followed 51 seconds later with her first goal. But there was a little uneasiness on the Lewiston bench.
"I actually told one of the girls, 'Oh boy, I don't know if this is good or bad,'" Dumont said.
Falmouth (0-2) needed just 16 seconds to answer that question and cut the deficit in half on Meg Pierce's goal. Lucy Meyer tied it at 7:48.
"It's all about getting your legs underneath you at this point and we just might not have had our legs underneath us," Lajoie said.
Lewiston regrouped at their bench during the short between-periods break.
"I explained to them between the first and second, 'Most of you have been here before. There's no excuse. You've got to learn how to work together.'"
"We got a little tired after we got up 2-0," Lemieux said. "When Mikaela St. Laurent scored that third goal, it fired us up."
St. Laurent found an open lane down the right side and flipped a wrister over the left arm of Falmouth goalie Hillary Nash (10 saves) for what proved to be the game-winner at 8:37 of the second.
"They started moving their legs more," Dumont said. "It's not an exact science. And we're still kind of blending lines. But what I was happy with was we were able to get everybody in."
Lajoie made the lead stand up with a nice stop on an Abby Payson bid, then got a little help from the left post.
"They were coming really hard at me," Lajoie said. "It was good to get shots. I don't like being in games where I'm not getting shots."
"She made some good (saves), but she's also a senior and I'm tough on her," Dumont said. "She'll come back here and work hard with the rest of the team (Thursday)."
Lemieux garnered the hat trick with goals at 12:13 and 14:51. Corinne Laberge and Lemieux rounded out the scoring in the third.