The Maine Nordiques started the 2022 North American Hockey League Showcase with a loss to one of last season’s top teams.

The Anchorage Wolverines, a second-year franchise in the NAHL Midwest Division, defeated the Nordiques 3-0 in Blaine, Minnesota, on Thursday.

Anchorage reached last season’s Robertson Cup final, losing to one of the Nordiques’ East Division rivals, the New Jersey Titans.

The score didn’t indicate what type of game Thursday’s contest was.

“We weathered a quick attack from them for three or four minutes and we balanced out, settled (into the game),” Nordiques coach Matt Pinchevsky said. “We pushed the pace, and we earned some opportunities. If we capitalize on one or two of those chances, we could have shifted the right way, momentum-wise. We worked through some (penalty killing), but that was a competitive game — it was back-and-forth, a lot of chances.”

Wolverines goalie Shane Soderwall stopped 34 shots in the win.


“He was outstanding, and he was tested for sure, but at times made it look easy,” Pinchevsky said. “They should be very happy with their goaltending.”

The game nearly went 40 minutes without a goal, but Lyten Liffrig scored a power-play goal in the final minute of the second period.

Anchorage went 1-for-6 on the power play in the game, while the Nordiques went 0-for-3.

Former Maine Nordiques Academy 18U defenseman Clay Allen helped set up Anchorage’s second goal. He assisted on Kade Shea’s tally nearly six minutes into the third period. Cooper Morris also recorded an assist.

David Tolan scored an empty-net goal in the final two minutes of the third period. Jackson Reineke notched his second assist of the game.

Maine Nordiques goalie Thomas Heaney made his third straight start and stopped 34 shots.


“Every set of eyeballs at that game took notice of the performance Thomas Heaney had,” Pinchevsky said. “At times, he may have been overworked and he had to be an excellent penalty-killer, but he gave us a chance all game long to come back and win.”

Pinchevsky noted that forwards Tony Achille and Filip Wiberg had good games as well. Achille made his presence known all over the ice, while Wiberg did well in the faceoff circle.

The Nordiques face the Oklahoma Warriors on Friday at the NAHL Showcase. Faceoff set for 6:15 p.m.

“They have a pretty potent power play; we want to touch on some bullet points with the (penalty kill),” Pinchevsky said. “We just have to be a little quicker in transition. Teams are going to have a hard time handling our speed, but we want to make sure we are putting ourselves to attack at top speed.”

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