Bryant University began both halves in Wednesday night’s men’s basketball game against the University of Maine the same way: with big runs.
The Bulldogs (14-8) started the first half with a 10-0 run and the second half with a 14-0 run en route to their 71-53 win over the Black Bears (9-13).
In America East play, UMaine is now 3-6, while Bryant is 5-4.
Bryant had a 10-0 run in the first three minutes of the game before Ja’Shonte Wright-McLeish hit a 3-pointer for UMaine to snap the run.
With 9:30 to play in the first half, UMaine trailed 18-12 and had already turned the ball over eight times. The Black Bears finished with 18 turnovers to Bryant’s 15.
UMaine was able to make it a 30-29 contest at the half thanks to a 3-pointer from Jaden Clayton and a triple at the buzzer from Kellen Tynes, and the Black Bears suddenly had all of the momentum.
However, the second half started similarly to the first. The Bulldogs got out in transition early and often en route to a 14-0 run to build a 44-29 lead that was capped off by an alley oop from Bryant’s Charles Pride to Earl Timberlake.
Timberlake finished the game with 18 points, 14 rebounds and five assists, while Pride poured in 14 points of his own. Sherif Gross-Bullock also added 16 points for Bryant.
UMaine was without Kristians Feierbergs tonight after he suffered an injury at the end of the Black Bears’ win over Albany on Saturday. Ata Turgut started in Feierbergs’ place and scored six points.
Bryant out-rebounded UMaine 37-25 and out-scored the Black Bears in the paint 46-18.
Peter Filipovity broke the scoreless streak for UMaine in the second half with a free throw followed by a 3-pointer from Gedi Juozapaitis. Juozapaitis finished with just seven points, a steep drop from his team-leading 15.1 points-per-game.
Wright-McLeish led UMaine with 11 points, followed by nine from Tynes. Clayton, who shot 3-9 from the field, scored seven points, tallied six assists and grabbed six boards.
The benches were emptied in the final minutes by both teams and UMaine was sent home with its first loss in four games.
UMaine hosts the University of Maryland Baltimore County on Saturday at The Pit at 2 p.m.