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UMBC Women's Basketball Starts the Second Half of Conference Play at Maine Saturday
Harris recorded a career-high 24 points in Wednesday contest against Binghamton
BALTIMORE – UMBC women’s basketball looks to start off the second half of its America East slate on the right foot when it travels to Orono, Maine on Saturday, Feb. 2 to take on the Black Bears. Tip-off is set for noon at Alfond Arena.
scouting the retrievers (6-15, 3-5 AE): UMBC dropped back-to-back home games for just the second time this season, falling to Boston University, 63-49, on Saturday and dropping a 66-57 contest to Binghamton on Wednesday. Senior guard Raven Harris scored 20 of her game-high 24 points in the second half against the Bearcats and chipped in six steals and six assists in the losing effort. Classmate Brittany Crowell notched double-digit points for the seventh straight game, scoring 12 points versus Binghamton.
Crowell and Harris continue to lead the squad on the offensive end, with each averaging over 15 points a game during conference play. The pair rank third and fourth, respectively, in the league in points per game during America East games, in addition to one ranking in the top-five in six other categories (assists, steals, free throw percentage, three-point field goal percentage, three-point field goals made and minutes played). Post players Dana Lewis and Kim Browning have picked up their play during conference action as well, with Lewis averaging 4.5 points and 5.5 rebounds and Browning averaging 4.1 points and 5.9 rebounds.
Head coach Phil Stern is in his 11th season at the helm of the Retrievers' program, after leading the black and gold to their second America East Championship game appearance last season. Following the graduation of 59.5 percent of the conference's highest scoring offense in 2011-12, UMBC (34 votes) was tabbed to finish sixth in the league behind Albany (61), Boston University (56), Hartford (54), New Hampshire (37) and Vermont (37).
scouting the Black Bears (2-19, 1-7 AE): Maine opened the conference slate with a 54-50 loss to the Retrievers on Jan. 5 and have since lost six of seven contests, with its lone victory coming against Stony Brook, 67-51, on Saturday, Jan. 26. Freshman forward Liz Wood tallied 12 points and nine rebounds to go along with five assists and four steals in the winning effort, helping her to earn her third America East Rookie of the Week honors. Sophomore forward Danielle Walczak added a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds in the victory.
In their most recent matchup, the Black Bears had four players finish in double-digit points, but it was not enough as New Hampshire defeated Maine 61-54 at UNH on Wednesday night. Senior forward Corinne Wellington scored a season-high 14 points and chipped in seven rebounds to lead the Black Bears.
Walczak and junior guard Ashleigh Roberts are each averaging a team-best 9.4 points per game on the season. Walczak is chipping in 5.2 rebounds, while Roberts is pulling down 4.6 per game. Wood is doing it all for the Black Bears during conference play, leading the squad in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals, averaging 10.9 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.0 steals per game.
Inside the Series: UMBC took control of the all-time series, 10-9, with its fourth-straight win against the Black Bears, a 54-50 victory on Jan. 5. Sophomore guard Bria White scored 14 of her team-high 15 points in the second half. White led three Retrievers that finished in double-figures, including 12 points from senior guard Brittany Crowell and 10 points from Raven Harris. UMBC looks to sweep Maine for the second consecutive season with a victory at Alfond Arena.
On the horizon for the retrievers: The Retrievers take a trip to Albany - the site of the America East Tournament - on Feb. 6, to take on the Great Danes who are undefeated in league play (8-0). UMBC returns home on Feb. 9 to take on Vermont and follow with a matchup against New Hampshire in the Retrievers' Play4Kay game.