October 15, 2019

Quinnipiac’s balanced attack tames Bears

ORONO – The University of Maine women’s basketball team showed off its ability to shoot free throws and rebound effectively during Saturday’s game against Quinnipiac.

Unfortunately for the Black Bears, they also showed a propensity for giving up easy baskets, committing turnovers and shooting poorly.

Quinnipiac countered by taking advantage of its depth, solid defense and balanced offense while pulling away for a 70-49 victory over UMaine in the consolation game of the 15th Dead River Co. Classic at Alfond Arena.

Coach Cindy Blodgett’s 1-4 Bears continued to struggle in key areas while spotting the Bobcats a sizeable early lead it would not relinquish.

“Unfortunately we’re getting ourselves in a hole early and we’re playing catch-up and that takes a lot of energy,” said Blodgett, whose team appeared fatigued while playing for the second time in less than 24 hours.

In the championship game, tourney Most Valuable Player Lindsay Hallion scored 19 points to lead Harvard to a 63-56 victory over Hofstra.

Hallion averaged 19.5 points on 16-for-19 shooting, along with five rebounds, 4.5 assists and 4.0 steals per contest. She is joined on the all-classic team by teammate Emily Tay, Brittany Boser of UMaine, Sam Brigham and Niki Williams of Hofstra, and Courtney Kaminski of Quinnipiac.

After nearly erasing a 17-point, second-half deficit Friday night, UMaine seemed to lack the intensity and energy it needed against Quinnipiac.

The Bears committed 14 of their 23 turnovers in the first half and scored only four field goals on 21 percent shooting during the first 20 minutes.

“We don’t have the luxury to be flat coming out in a game,” Blodgett said. “We have to figure it out. There’s no secret remedy.”

Boser led the way for UMaine, which wound up shooting 25 percent, with a career-high 19 points, including 9-for-9 foul shooting. Tanna Ross of Newburgh added eight points and five rebounds, while Colleen Kilmurray added six points and six rebounds.

Mandy Pennewell tallied 19 points for Quinnipiac, which shot 48 percent for the game and racked up 20 assists. Erin Kerner tossed in 17 points.

Despite being whistled for 16 fouls during a tightly officiated first half, Quinnipiac used its bench while building a 40-29 lead by intermission. The Bears, who went 21-for-24 from the foul line in the half, never got closer than eight after that.

“Our defense is the biggest factor in the games so far,” Boser said. “We really need to pick it up. It’s something we need to work on.”

UMaine, which collectively appeared a step slow, was unable to contain a Quinnipiac offense that shot 44 percent and put nine players in the scoring column, led by Pennewell’s 13. The Bobcats went 9-for-10 from the foul line.

Quinnipiac started quickly as three Pennewell 3-pointers helped stake the Bobcats to a 15-4 advantage less than six minutes into the game. After Kilmurray converted a conventional three-point play, connecting on UMaine’s first field goal at the 13:17 mark, Nicole Duperron scored three straight hoops to fuel a 10-0 burst that pushed the lead to 25-7 at the 10-minute mark.

“Our strength is our depth,” said Quinnipiac coach Tricia Fabbri. “I was pleased that everyone came off the bench and did their job.”

At the 4:26 mark, UMaine had as many turnovers (14) as field-goal attempts.

“That’s just being careless,” Blodgett said. “We need to really value the basketball. Every time you turn it over, it’s a missed opportunity.”

The Bears had one last gasp early in the second half as Boser sandwiched two close-range baskets around an Emily Rousseau 3-pointer to help UMaine trim the deficit to 44-36 with 14:45 remaining.

However, Quinnipiac responded with a 10-0 run that included three Kerner baskets and put the contest pretty much out of reach.

“We can’t rely on comebacks every game, it’s not going to work,” Boser said. “We’ve got to play the full 40 [minutes].”

In the championship game, Augusta’s Katie Rollins scored 13 of her 14 points in the second half to help lift Harvard of the Ivy League beat Hofstra of the Colonial Athletic Association for the title.

The former Cony High star scored eight points to jumpstart a critical 10-2 second-half scoring run that gave the Crimson (3-2) the upper hand.

“It was awesome. It was great being able to play in front of a hometown crowd again, even though I think most of them were cheering for Maine,” Rollins said. “It was amazing to be able to come home and I’m lucky coach gave me the opportunity to do it.”

With Hofstra (2-2) leading 34-31, Rollins made a layup and added the free throw to tie the game at the 16:03 mark. She then blocked a shot at the other end and converted another three-point play to give Harvard the lead with 15:33 left.

Rollins kept it going, grabbing a defensive rebound that led to her short jumper as the Crimson went ahead 39-36.

“It was better tonight,” Rollins said of scoring nine points in a foul-plagued effort Friday. “We picked up the momentum as a team and started to play our game, our tempo and let the game flow from there.”

The Crimson extended the lead to 12 points before holding off a late charge by Hofstra.

Tay and Hallion paced Harvard with 20 and 19 points, respectively. Brigham netted 13 points for Hofstra.

Hofstra (2-2) 56

Fuller 4-1-9, Quamme 4-0-8, Fripp 2-0-6, Brigham 5-2-13, Williams 5-0-10, Bellocchio, Rodgers 1-0-2, Campbell 3-0-6, Ali 0-2-2, Uzamere

Harvard (3-2) 63

Hallion 7-2-19, Rollins 5-4-14, Finelli 1-0-2, Tindal 1-0-2, Tay 9-2-20, Knox, Budischak 1-0-2, Matera, Markley, Moretzsohn 2-0-4

3-pt. goals: Fripp 2, Brigham; Hallion 3

Halftime: Harvard 31-29


Quinnipiac (2-1) Maine (1-4)

Player G AG F AF TP Player G AG AF TP

Lee 2 3 0 0 4 Boser 5 10 9 19

Kaminski 4 11 1 2 9 Rousseau 1 3

Kerner 7 12 2 2 17 Kilmurray 1 6

Rooney 1 1 4 4 7 Baker 0 3 0

Pennewell 7 17 2 2 19 Ross 1 8 8

Pratt 0 0 0 0 0 Younan 1 9 2

Duperron 4 5 0 2 8 Johnson 0 0 0

Lazos 1 2 0 0 2 Tewksbry 0 2

Adams 0 0 0 0 0 Bowen 1 2 3

Picillo 0 0 0 0 0 Mosher 0 0 0

McGowan 0 1 2 2 2 Vaitkute 2 6

Neyens 1 4 0 0 2 Bratishko 0 0

Totals 27 56 11 14 70 Totals 12 48 23 26 49

Quinnipiac 40 70

Maine 29 49

3-pt. goals – Quinnipiac (5-15): Pennewell 3-9, Rooney 1-1, Kerner 1-2, McGowan 0-1, Kaminski 0-2; Maine (2-20): Bowen 1-1, Rousseau 1-5, Kilmurray 0-1, Baker 0-3, Younan 0-4, Ross 0-6

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