The University of Maine played another strong second half on Sunday afternoon, pulling away to post a 70-53 America East women’s basketball victory over Binghamton at the Events Center in Vestal, New York.
The Black Bears limited the Bearcats to 3-for-12 shooting in the fourth quarter and held the hosts without a 3-pointer after they had made five in the first half.
First-place UMaine (12-1, 9-1 AE) earned its seventh consecutive victory behind 17 points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals from senior Blanca Millan. Classmate Dor Saar tallied 13 points, three assists and two steals, fellow senior Maeve Carroll posted 12 points and eight rebounds and sophomore Anne Simon contributed 12 points and four rebounds.
Senior Fanny Wadling chipped in with eight points and seven rebounds for the Black Bears, who shot 42 percent (27-for-64) overall, outrebounded the Bearcats 42-35 and tallied 20 points off 12 turnovers.
UMaine also logged a 38-28 edge in points in the paint.
“I really like how tough they are,” head coach Amy Vachon said of her team. “Teams are going to make runs at us, but to take those runs and be able to take them and respond, I think that’s great for us.”
Birna Benonysdottir paced Binghamton (4-10, 4-8 AE) with a game-high 18 points and five rebounds. Denai Bowman registered 15 points and eight rebounds.
The Bearcats had been 4-0 in the second game of a weekend conference series after going 0-5 in the openers. That streak ended Sunday.
UMaine led by as many as 15 points in the second quarter, but led by only five at halftime. The Black Bears then used a 9-2 surge in the third quarter to re-establish a double-figure margin.
Millan got the run started with two free throws at the 6:45 mark, then Carroll scored on a move in the lane to give UMaine a 43-35 edge. Cassidy Roberts countered with a basket for the Bearcats, but a Simon 3-pointer and Carroll’s close-range hoop gave the Black Bears a 48-37 lead with 4:41 to play in the period.
Binghamton couldn’t get closer than seven points the rest of the way and the Black Bears put together a 9-2 burst in the fourth quarter while limiting the Bearcats to eight points in the period to close out the victory.