BALTIMORE – UMBC women's basketball's freshman forward Sara Tarbert (Delta, Pa./Kennard-Dale) notched her second 20-point effort in the last four games in Saturday afternoon's America East matchup against Maine, but the Black Bears matched a program-record with 14 three-point field goals to defeat the Retrievers, 61-48.
Tarbert hit 9-of-15 attempts from the field for a game-high 22 points to go with seven rebounds, while classmate Taylor McCarley (Bowie, Md./Academy of Holy Cross) chipped in nine points and four rebounds. Sophomore center Bridget O'Donnell (Belle Mead, N.J./Montgomery) made her way into UMBC's single-season and career record book by tallying three blocked shots on the afternoon. She is tied for sixth with 40 blocked shots during the 2013-14 campaign and is tied for 15th all-time with 51 blocks in her career.
Maine hit 14-of-41 three-point attempts and totaled 62 field goal attempts in the contest, while the Retrievers knocked down 16-of-43 from the field. Sophomore forward Liz Wood led the attack, with all of her team-high 15 points coming in the opening half. Wood finished with eight rebounds, five steals and four assists. Red-shirt senior guard Cherrish Wallace also added double-digit points, scoring 11 and pulling down five boards.
The Black Bears (11-11) picked up their first victory in their last three tries to improve to 5-4 in America East play, while UMBC (2-19, 1-8 AEC) dropped its eighth straight league contest.
Wood helped to trigger a 13-2 run over a 6:34 span of the first half to help Maine to a 20-6 lead with 9:00 to go. Wood poured in four of five attempts from the floor for 10 points during the spurt.
The Black Bears led by as many as 15 in the opening period, but the Retrievers clawed their way back into the contest during the final five minutes of the half. Freshman guard Emily Russo (Woodbine, Md./Glenelg) started UMBC's comeback by drilling a trey and adding a pair of free throws. The Retrievers' defense held Maine scoreless for 4:53, allowing junior guard Janelle Saling's (Lathrop, Mo./Lathrop/Highland CC) shot from beyond the arc to bring UMBC's deficit back to single-digits, 28-21, with 1:40 to go in the frame.
Senior guard Ashleigh Roberts put a stop to the run by rattling home her only trey of the afternoon to extend the lead to 31-21 at the break. UMBC shot 47.1 percent from the floor in the period, but Maine took 14 more shots than the Retrievers, going 11-for-31.
Black Bear's sophomore guard Sophie Weckstrom knocked down two of her first three attempts from beyond the arc in the second half to help Maine open its lead back up to 15, 39-24, with 17:39 remaining in the contest. The Retrievers were not done yet though. Tarbert helped UMBC to chip away at its deficit again by nailing a long jumper to bring the Retrievers within eight, 36-44, with 10:35 left on the clock.
Tarbert's efforts were met by Wallace and sophomore forward Mikaela Gustafsson, who combined for a 10-2 run that extended the game back to a 16-point difference, 38-54.Gustafsson finished with eight points and seven rebounds.
Maine outrebounded UMBC 42-30, including 16 offensive boards. The Black Bears tallied 19 assists on 21 made field goals on the afternoon.
-Maine completed the season sweep of the Retrievers and evens the all-time series at 11 apiece.
-Sara Tarbert tallied her fourth 20-point effort of the season, reaching double-digit points for the fifth consecutive game and for the 15th time this season.