igh The road woes continued Saturday in frustrating and controversial fashion for the University of Maine women’s basketball team.
An apparent 3-pointer by Julie Brousseau that would’ve given the Black Bears the lead late in regulation was waved off, and the University of Maryland at Baltimore County scored the game’s final six points to post a 66-62 America East victory in Baltimore, Maryland.
The Retrievers improved to 11-12 overall and 6-4 in conference play while the Black Bears slip to 12-13 and 5-5, respectively.
The teams had entered Saturday’s action tied for fourth in the conference, and UMaine is now sixth in the league standings.
The Black Bears are 1-5 in America East away from the Cross Insurance Center. UMaine defeated UMBC 72-40 in Bangor earlier this season.
UMaine rallied from a 10-point fourth quarter deficit to take a 62-60 lead on Sheraton Jones’ 3-pointer with just over a minute and a half remaining.
UMBC quickly tied it on a layup by Taylor McCarley, and her layup with 45 seconds left gave the Retrievers the lead back.
The Black Bears thought they had retaken the lead with 26 seconds left on a Brousseau perimeter shot, which bounced off the back of the rim and in, but the officials ruled that the ball had apparently hit the shot clock above the basket, resulting in the ball going out of bounds.
“[The officials] said that’s not reviewable,” UMaine associate head coach Amy Vachon told Learfield broadcaster Don Shields after the game.
McCarley hit two free throws on UMBC’s next possession to seal the win.
UMBC broke open what had been a tight first half that saw 10 lead changes and two ties with an 18-10 run in the third quarter, and UMaine struggled from both the foul line (1-for-7) and from the perimeter (9-29).
“It’s just frustrating,” Vachon said. “We have to shoot the ball better. You can’t do that and expect to win games. We’ll have to regroup and get ready for Monday.”
Laia Sole would go on to lead the Black Bears with 15 points while Anita Kelava had 10.
Sigi Koizar scored seven of her nine points in the second half, as she spent much of the first 20 minutes on the bench with two fouls.
McCarley led all scorers with 21 points for UMBC while Laura Castaldo scored 12 and Lakiah Sims had 11.
UMaine returns to action Monday night when it travels to Hartford.