Saturday, March 6, 2010
UNH 68, Black Bears 57
A season of great strides for the UMaine basketball program came to a crashing halt Saturday night in the quarterfinals of the America East Tournament.
No. 6-seeded New Hampshire defended better, rebounded better, executed its offense better and pulled away in the second half for the upset of the No. 3 Black Bears.
UNH put the clamps on Gerald McLemore (7 points) throughout the game and UMaine struggled to find a rhythm on offense. At the other end, UNH's Brian Benson had career highs in points (13) and rebounds (9). He hit two 3-pointers in the game, doubling his season total. The Wildcats hit the glass hard, pulling down 14 offensive rebounds, and led by as much as 18 points in the second half.
Those are the kinds of things that win tournament games.
UMaine's tournament losing streak is now six, including five straight one-and-dones. The last UMaine win and semifinal appearance was in 2005 when the Black Bears beat Boston U.
Sean McNally had a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds. Terrance Mitchell added 11 points. Junior Bernal, in his final appearance in a Maine uniform, had six points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals.
The Black Bears who beat UNH by 14 and 19 during the regular season, finish 19-11.