#4 Women's Basketball Meets #5 Hartford Friday Evening in America East Quarterfinal Action on ESPN3
ORONO, Maine -- The University of Maine women's basketball team (16-13, 10-6 America East) rolls into the postseason tournament with its most successful season since 2004-05 as it takes on #5 seeded Hartford in the quarterfinals of the America East tournament on ESPN3. The Black Bears have earned their highest seed in the tournament since going in as the #1 overall seed in 2005. Maine last won the tournament in 2003-04 and enters 3-3 in postseason play against the Hawks.
A LOOK AT THE BLACK BEARS...
Maine enters the tournament on a two-game win streak and will be looking for its first quarterfinal victory in the conference tournament since it defeated New Hampshire, 66-40, in 2004. Maine enters the tournament with an 0-2 record all-time as a #4 seed and is 3-2 all-time when playing the #5 seed.
Senior Ashleigh Roberts leads the Maine offense as she ranks sixth in the league in scoring at 13.4 points per game. Roberts, who has tallied double-figures in scoring in her last three games, ranks 16th in the league in rebounding (5.7) and third in field goal percentage at 48.0. Roberts enters the tournament tied for 10th all-time in scoring at Maine with 1,194 points and trails Ashley Underwood by one-point from ninth all-time. Liz Wood adds several dimensions to the Black Bears' as she ranks seventh in the league in scoring (12.4), seventh in rebounding (6.7), eighth in field goal percentage (43.7), ninth in assists (2.9), fifth in steals (2.0), tied for 10th in offensive rebounding (2.2), tied for eighth in defensive rebounding (4.4) and ninth in total minutes (31.2). Wood, who tallied her ninth double-double of the season in the final week while also dropping her 650th career point, was named America East Co-Player of the Week in the league's last week of competition. Cherrish Wallace runs the point for the Black Bears as she is averaging 8.1 points and a team-high 3.6 assists. Sophomore sharp-shooter Lauren Bodine leads the league in 3-point field goal percentage (43.5) and 3-pointers made per game (2.1) while adding 7.4 points. Her 3-point percentage ranks 14th in the nation. Bodine's 60 3-pointers this season rank her just 10 shy of matching Maine's all-time record. Sophie Weckstrom is adding 5.7 points and a 33.6-percent mark from 3-point range while freshman Sigi Koizar gives Maine a boost off the bench with 4.9 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists.
The Black Bears rank third in the league in scoring (65.4) while giving up 64.8 points per game. Maine leads the league in 3-point shooting (34.6), rank second from the floor (42.9) and fifth from the free throw stripe (68.8). Maine also leads the league in assists (16.7) and 3-pointers made (7.7) while sitting sixth in rebounding at 35.5 rebounds per game.
Hartford enters the tournament winners of three of its last four including a 57-49 win in its season finale against Vermont and will be looking for their first tournament championship since 2007-08. Amber Bepko leads the Hawks' offense as she ranks 15th in the league in scoring at 10.2 points per game. Bepko is a threat from outside as she ranks third in the league from 3-point range (37.3) and has made a third-best 2.1 3-pointers per game. Cherelle Moore is adding 9.6 points and ranks ninth in rebounding at 6.4 per game. Deanna Mayza gets the offense moving for the Hawks as she ranks tenth in the league in assists (2.9) while chipping in 9.0 points and 2.3 rebounds.
Hartford ranks seven in the league in scoring (59.0) while its defense sits fourth, allowing 63.3 points per game. Hartford ranks sixth in the league in shooting (37.7), sixth in free throw shooting (68.2) and rank second, just behind Maine, in 3-point percentage (32.2). Hartford ranks seventh in rebounding (34.9) while giving up the second-most rebounds per game at 39.9.
Maine and Hartford will be meeting for the 65th time in history with Maine holding a 38-26 advantage in the series. The two will be meeting for the seventh time in postseason play with the series knotted at 3-3. The two teams last met in postseason play in 2006 where Maine lost 58-35. The Black Bears have lost the last three postseason meetings with Hartford and last won a postseason matchup against Hartford in 1996 by a score of 80-69. Maine won the first three postseason meetings with Hartford. Maine picked up a 60-56 win earlier this year at Hartford, snapping an 18-game losing streak against the Hawks. The Black Bears took the first ever meeting between the two programs by a score of 71-53 on Jan. 13, 1986.
TO PUT THINGS IN PERSPECTIVE...
In the past three years, the Black Bears have recorded a total of 16 wins. With its win at New Hampshire, Maine has now totaled 16 wins on the year, equaling its total win total over the past three years combined. Maine also has 10 conference wins, passing its last three season total (9).
LIZ WOOD PLAYER OF THE WEEK...
Sophomore Liz Wood ended the season on a high note as she claimed the season's last co-player of the week award. Wood averaged a double-double with 18.0 points and 11.0 rebounds. Wood, who helped lead the Black Bears to a pair of wins, narrowly missed out on a triple-double as she tallied 20 points and career-highs in rebounds (15) and assists (8) while adding a pair of steals in Maine's win over UMass Lowell. Wood followed up her performance with a strong showing in the Black Bears' final regular season contest as she totaled 16 points, including the 650th point of her career, to go along with seven rebounds.
BIG NIGHT/SENIOR NIGHT...
The Black Bears posted big numbers on senior night, Feb. 26, against UMass Lowell. Maine tallied 84 points in the win. The Black Bears pulled down 57 rebounds, their most since a 63 rebound effort on Nov. 25, 2005 against Kennesaw State, and attempted 77 field goals, the most since 79 attempts on Dec. 10, 2000 against Delaware. Maine also tallied 28 assists, its most of the season and just six shy of the all-time record set in 1983-84.
CONFERENCE 3-POINT MARKS...
Looking towards all-time conference marks, Maine's 222 3-pointers currently ranks one 3-point field goal out of first place all-time for 3-pointers made in a season (223) while its 641 attempts are just 19 shy of first all-time (660). UMBC currently holds the all-time 3-pointers made in a season mark at 223 in 2007-08 and also took 660 3-point attempts, highest ever in the conference, that same year.
THE 1000/500 CLUB...
With nine rebounds at Hartford on Feb. 12, Ashleigh Roberts surpassed 500 rebounds for her career. With 1,194 points and 537 rebounds, Roberts is now just the 13th Black Bear to ever record 1,000+ points and 500+ rebounds for her career and the first since Bracey Barker in 2006-07. Roberts currently ranks tied for 10th on Maine's all-time scoring list after passing both Heather Briggs (1,176) and Bracey Barker (1,166) on Feb. 26 against UMass Lowell. Roberts needs just one point to move ahead of Tracey Frenette (1,194) for 10th all-time in scoring. With that one point, she will then tie Ashley Underwood for ninth all time (1,195-2007) Here's a look at the complete list of 1000/500 rebounders:
Cindy Blodgett - 3,005 pts/629 rebounds
Rachel Bouchard - 2,405/1299
Jamie Cassidy - 2,380/983
Liz Coffin - 2,153/1,351
Heather Ernest - 1,804/1,040
Emily Ellis - 1,637/623
Lauree Gott - 1,387/781
Stephanie Guidi - 1,295/607
Tracey Frenette - 1,194/638
Ashleigh Roberts - 1,194/528
Heather Briggs - 1,176/663
Bracey Barker - 1,166/555
Stacey Porrini - 1,128/929
WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES...
28 games into the 2013-14 season, Maine has already increased its win total +12 from a year ago. That figure currently ranks tied with St. Bonaventure (+12) and University of Illinois at Chicago (+12) for top turn arounds in the nation.
A TURN AROUND SEASON...
With its victory at Hartford, Maine has reached its largest overall win total since winning 20 games in 2004-05. The win also gave Maine eight league wins, its most since 16 America East victories in 2004-05.
With five 3-point field goals at Vermont, Maine surpassed the all-time record of three-pointers made in a season. Maine currently has hit 222 total three-pointers this season, breaking the all-time record for most three-point field goal makes in a single year (173) which it accomplished in the 2003-04 season. Maine has currently attempted 641 three-pointers, besting the record for three-point attempts of 560 which was set just a season ago. Maine ranks 35th in the nation in 3-pointers made per game (7.7).
ROBERTS 10th ALL-TIME IN SCORING...
With 17 points at New Hampshire on March 1, Roberts tied Tracey Frenette for 10th all-time in scoring at Maine (1,194). With two more points, Roberts will move ahead of Ashley Underwood (1,195 - 2007). Roberts stands 101 points away from Stephanie Guidi's eight-place mark of 1,295 points (1996).
RECORD 3-POINT NIGHT...
In a 61-48 win at UMBC on Feb. 1, the Black Bears matched a school-record with 14 team 3-point makes and broke the single game record for 3-pointers attempted with 41. Maine's 14 makes tied the record which was previous set vs. Vermont on Feb. 10, 1999. Maine's 41 makes snaps the old record of 32, which was set twice earlier this year (Dec. 15 at Northeastern & Jan. 8 vs. UMBC). The 14 makes ties Maine for fourth best all-time amongst America East all-time record holders while the 41 are the most in a game by a single team in league history.
CHASING THE INDIVIDUAL THREE-POINT MARK...
Lauren Bodine has hit 60 three-pointers so far this season. Bodine is currently 13 three-point field goals away from besting Kristen McCormick's season mark of 70 set in 1998-99.