FORT MYERS, Florida — The University of Maine Black Bears took a three-point lead at the end of the first quarter and then used a 10-0 scoring surge in the second quarter to pull away from the LSU Tigers en route to a 52-41 women’s basketball victory in the fifth-place game of the Gulf Coast Showcase Sunday.
Chantel Charles paced Maine (5-3) with 14 points on a 5-for-7 effort from the floor. Liz Wood chipped in with 12 points and nine rebounds while Mikaela Gustafsson and Sigi Koizar each added nine points.
Alexis Hyder led the Tigers (4-4) with 13 points, Akilah Bethel added 11 and Jenna Deemer netted 10. Hyder also grabbed 11 rebounds to help LSU gain a 32-31 edge over the Black Bears.
The Black Bears hit 55.6 percent of their shots (20 of 36) from the floor while holding LSU to a 27.3 effort (15 of 55).
Maine’s Lauren Bodine hit a 3-pointer in the final seconds of the first to give the Bears a 12-9 edge entering the second and they would never trail again in the game.
After Charles hit a 3-pointer eight seconds into the second quarter, LSU’s Bethel answered with a conventional three-point play before the Bears rattled off 10 unanswered points to take a 25-12 lead with 4:20 left in the half.
Koizar started the scoring surge with a jumper, Gustafsson made a layup and Wood followed with two layups before Koizar ended the surge with a layup as the Bears closed halftime with a 30-16 lead.
The Bears expanded their lead to 16 in the third quarter before the Tigers whittled it back down by outscoring Maine 7-1 in the last three minutes of the quarter.
The Bears return home for a 7 p.m. Tuesday contest against Division III Colby at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.