Immediate Release: February 7, 2004
Contact: David Berman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Maine's offensive balance proves too much for Binghamton in 64-43 loss
Events Center Firsts
VESTAL, N.Y.--Visiting Maine (15-5, 10-0 America East) put four players in double figures and won its 26th straight regular season game against America East competition, defeating Binghamton (11-7, 6-4 AE) 64-43 on Saturday afternoon. The game was the first women's basketball game at Binghamton's $33.1 million Events Center.
"I thought we played very hard today," BU head coach Rich Conover said. "We executed our plays but we didn't make shots. When you spot a team like Maine a 15-point lead to open the game, that's a tough task to come back from."
The Black Bears opened the second stanza with a 9-2 run to stretch a 12-point halftime advantage to 42-23 with 12:21 remaining. Maine limited the Bearcats to just one field goal in the first nine minutes of the half, and Binghamton managed just five buckets (21 percent shooting) in the period.
Two of those field goals came in a span of 1:33, when the Bearcats scored seven straight points to trim the margin to 42-30 with 9:49 left. The Black Bears responded by making their next four shots, however, and took a 51-31 lead with eight minutes remaining.
Sophomore guard Rachel Laws (Wyncote, Pa.) tallied game-highs of 15 points and eight rebounds, and senior forward Leala Wegwerth (Maplewood, Minn.) chipped in 11 points.
Maine displayed a balanced offense throughout the game, as six different players scored at least seven points. Senior forward Heather Ernest made two shots in the Black Bears run to open the second half, and wound up with 11 points and a team-high six rebounds. Senior guard Melissa Heon and junior guards Missy Traversi and Kim Corbitt also contributed 11 points.
Maine's run to open the second half matched the way they started the game. The Black Bears held Binghamton scoreless for nearly the first seven minutes of the contest, and raced out to an 18-3 lead midway through the first half. The Bearcats were never closer than 11 points the rest of the way. Maine prevented any potential Binghamton rallies by making 19-of-21 free throws and maintaining a 40-24 rebounding edge.
Binghamton will look to snap its three-game losing skid when it travels to Albany on Wednesday evening for a 7 p.m. matchup. The game, like the first played between the two teams this season, will be televised by the America East TV network. Empire Sports Network will carry the game.
NOTES: Rachel Laws scored in double figures for the 15th straight game and 17th time in 18 games this season ... she also led the team in scoring for the 10th time ... Binghamton was held under 50 points for the fifth time this season, including the third game in a row ... that hasn't happened since BU was held in the 40's for four straight games from Jan. 14-21, 1994 ... Binghamton was 3-1 in that stretch ... the crowd of 2,464 was the largest home crowd ever for a women's basketball game at Binghamton ... the previous largest crowd was 1,865 on March 7, 1998, when Binghamton hosted Elmira in the second round of the NCAA Division II Tournament.
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