June 26, 2019
MEN'S BASKETBALL

Black Bears roar to win over Mules Teams use game as tuneup for league play

ORONO – With league play looming, there was much to be gained Tuesday night when the University of Maine and Colby College men’s basketball teams played for the first time in more than 25 years.

While a victory by the Division I Black Bears over the Division III White Mules was pretty much a given, both teams concentrated on executing particular aspects of their respective games.

UMaine cruised to an 80-47 victory over Colby College of Waterville with 1,170 fans looking on at Alfond Arena and both squads achieved benefits from the contest.

Coach John Giannini’s 6-3 Bears got a final tuneup on their home court for Friday night’s America East opener here against Hartford.

“Logistically, this is just our second game in the last two months at Alfond, so we certainly want to get used to our home environments again before the conference season starts,” Giannini said. “I think that’s maybe the most important benefit of this game.”

Dick Whitmore’s 3-6 Mules, who open their New England Small College Athletic Conference season next month, sought small victories in the game.

“I think our aim is to be able to find possessions during the course of the game that we can compete,” Whitmore said. “We really stressed a lot breaking the game down into segments.

“This was a tremendous opportunity to be able to find out exactly where the warts are and where we have to get to be able to play a Williams [team] who beat Holy Cross by 15 two weeks ago.”

The Bears were bigger, stronger and quicker than the Mules. They exploited their inside game, took advantage of their transition attack and maintained relentless defensive pressure on Colby.

Kevin Reed paced UMaine with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Mark Flavin provided 12 points and six rebounds. David Dubois netted 11 points and Eric Dobson posted 10 points, seven assists and four steals.

“I’d say being physical with the ball, protecting the ball, holding onto possessions and not giving away turnovers [were the biggest challenges],” said Colby standout Michael Westbrooks. “Obviously, they’re a lot more physical than us, so it’s important for us to go out there with a mental attitude that we need to play strong.”

Colby was led by Westbrooks’ 16-point, 6-rebound effort. Patrick McGowan posted 12 points and five assists. The Mules committed 27 turnovers.

The Bears shot 53 percent from the field and outrebounded Colby 38-28.

Still, Whitmore was glad his team accepted the challenge.

“Our guys were jacked up all week just getting ready for this kind of opportunity,” Whitmore said. “We have to be preparing our guys to be able to find and seek the highest level of competition and this sure as heck is that… ”

BLACK BEARS 80, WHITE MULES 47

Colby (3-6) Maine (6-3)

Player G AG F AF TP Player G AG AF TP

Cohen 0 1 0 0 0 Dobson 5 6 10

McGowan 4 9 2 3 12 Reed 6 9 16

Loukes 1 5 0 0 2 Dubois 5 6 11

Dick 0 4 0 0 0 Campbell 2 6 6

Westbrooks 7 13 0 0 16 Markwood 2 9

Snyder-Fair 1 2 1 4 3 Wallingford 1 3

Nale 0 2 0 0 0 Hadjisotirov 0 0 0

Jenkins 1 6 1 2 4 Petkus 2 7 4

Farrell 1 1 0 0 3 Flavin 3 5 12

Forlizzi 0 4 2 2 2 Bruff 2 5 7

Civiello 0 0 0 0 0 Ahvenniemi 0 2

Bandi 0 0 0 0 0

Rutherford 2 5 1 1 5

Totals 17 52 7 12 47 Totals 28 53 21 27 80

Colby 21 47

Maine 38 80

3-pt. goals ? Colby (6-18): Westbrooks 2-3, McGowan 2-5, Farrell 1-1, Jenkins 1-4, Forlizzi 0-1, Dick 0-4; Maine (3-18): Markwood 1-2, Reed 1-3, Wallingford 1-3, Flavin 0-1, Bruff 0-1, Campbell 0-3, Petkus 0-5

Attendance: 1,170


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