Riverhawks Fly past Maine Men’s Basketball, 84-72
LOWELL, Mass. – Till Gloger recorded his second-consecutive 20-point game but it wasn't enough as the UMass Lowell Riverhawks swept the season series, defeating Maine, 84-72 at the Costello Athletic Center on Thursday night. With the loss the Black Bears drop to 5-22 and 3-12 in conference, while the upstart Riverhawks improve to 10-18 and 8-8 in America East play.
Maine, which finished the first half with a 38-35 lead, was outscored 49-34 in the second frame on the way to the loss.
The Black Bears shot a scorching 57 percent in the first frame but that dropped drastically in the second half hitting only 15-of-38 for 39 percent from the field.
Antonio Bivins once again paced the UMass Lowell attack scoring 24 points and recording 12 rebounds for the double-double. DJ Mlachnik scored 19 and Akeem Williams chipped in 11.
On the Maine side it was Gloger who scored 20 to lead the way while Xavier Pollard's 15 and Shaun Lawton's 11 aided the Black Bear offense. Zarko Valjarevic finshed the game with seven points and hit a career-milestone surpassing the 500-point plateau and now sits with 502.
Maine finished the game with equal rebounds to UMass Lowell as both finished the game with 33 apiece, while the Riverhawks edged Maine in the turnover department only recording 14 turnovers to Maine's 16.
Umass Lowell got on the board in the opening minute as Tyler Livingston nailed a trey as the shot clock expired on the opening possession as the Riverhawks went up 3-0.
The Black Bears came roaring right back, scoring three-straight buckets to force an UMass Lowell timeout. Mackey started the run with a layup at the 18:10 mark followed by a Pollard fastbreak following a Lawton turnover. Gloger got on the board just a minute later putting Maine up 6-3 and forcing a Riverhawks timeout at the 17:26 mark.
Coming out of the break Pollard made it 8-3 with his second bucket of the day to extend it to an 8-3 run. UMass Lowell fought back, hitting a 3-pointer at the 14:23 mark to knot the game up at 8-8.
The Riverhawks took the lead and pushed the score to 13-10 with just under 13:00 minutes left in the half but Gloger got free in the paint and laid in a bucket to cut the deficit to just one, making it 13-12.
Back-to-back fastbreak layups by Pollard gave Maine an 18-15 lead with 9:45 left in the half but on the next possession DJ Mlachnik answered with a 3-pointer to make it 18-18.
Umass Lowell got the lead and pushed it out to 28-23 before Maine went on a 7-0 run to retake the lead, 30-28 sparked by a trey by Valjarevic as the Black Bears headed into the final media-timeout up by two.
The Black Bears ended the half edging the Riverhawks in scoring 10-7 to go into halftime up 38-35.
The Black Bears had two players hit double-digit points for the first half as Pollard led the way with 13 and Gloger pitched in 10. The duo continued their double-figure point streaks as Pollard extended it to 11 while Gloger made it five-straight.
The Riverhawks also had a pair of double-digit performers as Bivins, who dropped 25 on the Black Bears last meeting, paced the team with 14 while Mlachnik tallied 11.
Both teams shot over 50 percent for the frame as Maine shot 57 percent while UMass Lowell recorded a 52 percent mark.
UMass Lowell opened the second half on fire, going on a 9-2 run to force a Maine timeout with 17:43 remaining in the half. Bivins led the charge tallying two buckets and Williams capped the run before the timeout, hitting a long-range basket to make it 44-40, UMass Lowell.
The Riverhawks continued its onslaught as they edged Maine 6-2 on their next mini-run forcing yet another Maine timeout around the 16:00 minute mark as the UMass Lowell held a 50-42 lead.
The Black Bear continued to fight, with the score 52-42 in the Riverhawks favor the Black Bears went on an 8-3 run, sparked by a couple of buckets by Mackey to force a UMass Lowell timeout with just over 11:00 minutes remaining, making it 55-50.
With the score 66-58, Mackey kept it close reeling in an offensive rebound and slamming down his fourth bucket of the game to make it 66-60 with 5:41 left in the game.
The Riverhawks didn't flinch however maintain the lead and going on a 18-14 run to close out the game to record the 84-72 victory and sweep the season series.
The Black Bears head back to Bangor, Maine on Sunday when the team hosts rival New Hampshire on Sunday beginning at 2 p.m. at the Cross Insurance Center. That game will be the regular season finale for the Black Bears before heading to the conference tournament.