Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Black Bears (11-6, 3-1) at Albany (6-14, 1-4)

Thursday, Jan. 21, 7 p.m.
SEFCU Arena, Albany, N.Y.

Albany will host the Black Bears minus leading scorer Will Harris (14.7 points, 4.6 rebounds), who suffered a knee contusion against Boston University earlier in the week. Great Danes coach Will Brown, in a Times Union story Wednesday, said there's "not a shot ..." that Harris will play against UMaine and that when he'll return is unknown.

That leaves guard Tim Ambrose (13.9 points, 4.7 points, 3.1 assists) as Albany's top scorer when they take the floor Thursday. Freshman Logan Aronhalt (5.1 points) has been playing well for Albany and was recently named America East Rookie of the Week.

For UMaine to win: Must guard against a letdown because Harris isn't on the floor. Sometimes, when a leading player goes down, the others pull together for the short term. ... Ambrose is a solid guard, but if the Black Bears play their customary defense and shoot a little better than the New Hampshire game, it will be tough for the Great Danes to keep pace. ... Look for the Black Bears to exploit Albany inside. ... And remember, eventually, Gerald McLemore is going to bounce back and find his shooting rhythm. ... UMaine needs to keep the pressure on by pounding the glass. The UNH performance on the boards was impressive. The same work Thursday should reap big rewards.