ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Tanisha Sutton scored a layup with five seconds remaining, then made a game-ending steal to lift the University of Maine women’s basketball team to a 47-46 victory over the University of Pennsylvania in the championship game of the Navy Classic.
The undermanned Black Bears, playing without starting forward Fanny Wadling (concussion) and backup forward Maeve Carroll (wrist), made clutch plays down the stretch to eke out their second straight win.
Coach Amy Vachon’s team (4-2) overcame 30 percent shooting (11-for-29) and 23 percent 3-point accuracy (5-for-22) and a 46-29 rebounding deficit. UMaine did force many of the 20 turnovers committed by the Quakers (4-2) and converted them into 15 points.
The Black Bears utilized only six players, with Dor Saar logging 40 minutes and Parise Rossignol and Maddy McVicar playing 38 and 37 minutes, respectively. Sutton played 35 minutes and Blanca Millan was on the court for 34.
Sutton led UMaine with 16 points to go with a team-high seven rebounds and Rossignol finished with 12 points on 5-for-11 shooting, including two 3-pointers, and seven rebounds. Millan was limited two nine points but dished out four assists.
Eleah Parker was a force for Penn with 17 points on the strength of 8-for-12 shooting, along with nine rebounds. Katie Kinum hit four 3-pointers good for 12 points and Ashley Russell pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds.
Penn outscored UMaine 26-14 in the paint.
The Quakers led 43-37 after Parker’s basket from the paint with 4:15 to play. However, former Calais High School star McVicar answered with a 3-pointer at the 3:42 mark.
UMaine narrowed the deficit to 43-42 on two Sutton free throws, but Parker made the second of a two-shot foul situation to keep Penn ahead 44-42 with 49 seconds left.
Van Buren product Rossignol put the Black Bears in front with a 3-pointer with 25 seconds remaining, only to have Penn counter with Parker’s bucket from the lane that gave the Quakers a 46-45 edge with 11 seconds to go.
However, UMaine worked the ball inside to Sutton, who scored with five seconds left and, after a Penn timeout, she closed it out with the steal.