April 07, 2020

Dunkley, Dye pace UMaine past Nanooks > Black Bears bury 16 3-pointers

ORONO – Al Sokaitis walked into Alfond Arena on Thursday night with a plan he thought would work against the University of Maine.

Sokaitis wanted his University of Alaska-Fairbanks players to contest Julian Dunkley vigorously on the perimeter. And he wanted them to more or less concede shots to the rest of the Bears.

The road-weary Nanooks failed miserably on the first count, and another Black Bear made them pay dearly for their second oversight in a 101-72 UMaine victory.

Dunkley, a 6-foot-10 senior forward, rained in seven of nine 3-point attempts and scored a career-high 34 points, while junior guard Huggy Dye made seven of 10 long bombs en route to 31 points, also a career high.

“They had kids we were gonna let shoot, and they made those shots,” said Sokaitis, who coached at the University of Southern Maine from 1990-96. “Meanwhile, we may have missed more layups than any team in the history of basketball.”

The Black Bears improved to 4-1 in front of 2,183 fans watching their home debut. The Division II Nanooks dropped to 1-4.

The Bears made 14 of their first 20 shots from the floor in the first half and opened the second half by making six of seven attempts.

In between those two runs, though, the Black Bears sputtered a bit, allowing the Nanooks to turn an early 22-point deficit into a more manageable eight-point disadvantage at the half.

“I thought we played about 30 minutes of very good basketball,” UMaine coach John Giannini said. “We just hit that period there where we made some substitutions midway through the first half and things didn’t go well.”

Dunkley and Dye sparked an offensive show that tied one UMaine record (16 3-pointers made) and narrowly missed on another (32 assists was one shy of the school mark).

Dunkley said his shots were just a by-product of the Black Bears’ offensive execution.

“I just felt that I was waiting for the shots to come to me,” Dunkley said. “I was being patient and running the offense. I got some open looks from within the offense and just took advantage of them.”

Freshman guard Tory Cavalieri handed out 10 assists and committed only three turnovers in 24 minutes of action while starting point guard Errick Greene handed out six assists.

Dunkley grabbed 10 rebounds to go with his offensive output while Carvell Ammons contributed 14 points and seven rebounds.

Dye was pleased with the Black Bears’ effort after struggling late in the first half.

“I felt very good about the second half,” Dye said. “The chemistry is starting to come together a little bit.”

Bogdan Popescu had 20 points for the Nanooks and Ryan Foppe scored 16.

Sokaitis said the Nanooks tried hard, but just couldn’t make plays.

“I thought mentally, in terms of things that we work on, we weren’t crisp,” Sokaitis said. “And maybe that’s a part of [traveling for] 12 days, 12,000 miles.”

In the first half, the Black Bears looked like they were going to make short work of the Nanooks, as they rode some unselfish play and red-hot shooting to a big early lead.

Included in the early barrage were six 3-pointers and two dunks. By the time Dunkley rained in his fourth 3-pointer during a torrid three-minute span, the Black Bears led 34-14 and he was well on the way to 19 first-half points. Dunkley made seven of his eight shots in the half.

When Rickey White and Ammons countered a Nate Endicot bucket with hoops of their own to push the lead to 22 points, the Black Bears had made eight straight shots from the floor and the Bears looked ready to blow Alaska-Fairbanks out.

But after scoring 14 of their first 16 shots off assists, the Black Bears offense sputtered a bit – they scored only two more hoops off feeds from their teammates over the final six minutes of the period.

The Nanooks answered with an 11-0 run that cut the lead in half, and eventually went to the locker room trailing by only eight at 43-35.

Zach Raidmae led that surge with all nine of his first-half points.

Maine ended up shooting 56.3 percent in the first half (18 for 32), which means they made only two of their final 12 field goal attempts in the period after the blazing start.

Black Bears 101, Nanooks 72 Alaska-Fairbanks (1-4) Maine (4-1) Player G AG F AF TP Player G AG F AF TP Foppe 7 11 2 4 16 Dunkley 11 16 5 9 34 Knutson 3 11 1 4 8 Greene 1 4 0 0 2 Servine 1 5 2 4 5 Jackson 0 1 0 0 0 VanWoudnbrg 2 8 2 2 7 Dye 11 19 2 2 31 Popescu 7 18 6 6 2 Ammons 6 10 2 4 14 Endicot 2 2 0 0 2 Waterman 0 0 0 0 0 Raidmae 2 3 3 4 9 Cavalieri 1 2 0 0 2 Lamb 1 3 1 3 3 Tibbetts 1 1 1 2 4

Riley 1 3 1 2 3

Haynes 2 4 0 0 5

Croom 0 1 0 0 0

Brown 0 1 0 0 0

White 3 5 0 0 6

Totals 25 61 17 27 72 Totals 37 67 11 19 101

Alaska-Fairbanks 35 72

Maine 43 101

3-pt. goals: Alaska-Fairbanks (5-16): Knutson 1-6, Servine 1-3, Van Woudenberg 1-3, Popescu 0-1, Raidmae 2-3; Maine (16-26): Dunkley 7-9, Greene 0-1, Dye 7-10, Cavalieri 0-1, Tibbetts 1-1, Riley 0-1, Haynes 1-2, White 0-1

Attendance: 2,183

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