ORONO, Maine - Heather Ernest scored a game-high 18 points and hauled down seven boards to lead Maine to a 64-51 victory over New Hampshire in America East women's basketball action Sunday afternoon in front of 2,433 at Alfond Arena.
The loss ended a season-long four-game winning streak for the 'Cats and dropped UNH to 10-8 overall and into a tie with Maine in the conference standings at 4-3. The Black Bears improved to 11-7, 4-3. Aubrey Danen (Oconomowoc, Wisc.) led the Wildcats with a team-high 13 points and 12 rebounds, her fourth double-double of the season, while sophomore Maren Matthias (Guilford, Conn.) had nine points and 11 rebounds.
The Black Bears led most of the first half, taking the lead on a 7-0 spurt midway through that gave them a 16-9 edge with 9:34 to go. The 'Cats kept the deficit to no more than seven points until an Ernest three-pointer put Maine up 48-39 with 8:14 remaining in the game. Maine took its first double-digit lead of the night after two free throws Kim Corbitt with 6:16 remaining and held onto its advantage thanks to good free throw shooting down the stretch. The Black Bears went to the line 26 times in the game overall, converting 22 of their opportunities (.846) compared to the Wildcats 8-14 (.571).
UNH returns to action next weekend with a pair of home games against Stony Brook on Friday (2/1) and current league leader Binghamton on Sunday (2/3). Game times at Lundholm Gymnasium are 7 and 1 p.m., respectively.