Orono, Maine - Julie Forster recorded her sixth double-double of the season with 16 points and 12 rebounds, while Lindsey Lowrie continued her strong play for the Great Danes, scoring a game-high 19 points, as UAlbany defeated Maine, 60-48, in America East Conference women's basketball action on Saturday afternoon at Alfond Arena. The Great Danes improved to 11-7 overall and 5-0 in league play to hold onto first place in the conference standings.
The teams played a back-and-forth start to the game, with neither squad getting more than a three-point lead to go along with five ties through the first 15 minutes of action. UAlbany held the largest lead of three points, 14-11, at 8:18, as Keyana Williams converted a layup with an assist from Lowrie. After Maine's Kelsey Mattice tied the game for the fifth time at 17-17 at 5:49 with a jumper, UAlbany embarked on a 7-2 run to build up a 26-19 advantage. Lowrie sunk one of her three 3-pointers in the game with 2:55 left in the half to give the Great Danes the seven-point lead. However, the Black Bears fought back, getting free throws by Brittany Williams and a 3-pointer by Mattice to cut the score back to 28-26 with under a minute to go in the half. With 16 seconds left, Lowrie nailed a long-range shot to send the Great Danes to the locker room with a 31-26 advantage.
After the halftime break, UAlbany built up an eight-point lead, 38-30, on a layup by Forster, but Maine used layups by Samantha Baranowski and Corrine Wellington to cut the lead back to four. Wellington and Courtney Anderson then went 4-for-4 from the free throw line to tie the game up at 38. The Great Danes would not give up the lead, getting back-to-back jumpers by Forster to get back up by four, 42-38, with 12:34 left to play. The Black Bears continued to battle, using a 3-pointer by Mattice with 9:25 on the clock to pull within one, before another trey from Anderson gave Maine its first lead of the second half.
Following two more tied scores, UAlbany buckled down to close out the game on a 12-0 run, holding Maine without a point for the final 7:55 of play. Despite shooting just 56.7-percent from the free throw line for the game, the Great Danes went 4-of-6 from the line in the closing minutes to help seal up the double-digit victory. Forster and Lowrie each sank a bucket in the late going for UAlbany to set the final score.
Maine (3-14, AE 0-4) had three players score 10 points, including Mattice, who hit two of the Black Bears' three 3-pointers. Baranowski and Ashleigh Roberts also netted 10 points, while Baranowski led Maine off the boards with a team-high eight rebounds.
Lowrie, who played all 40 minutes for UAlbany, added a game-high four assists and four steals to her game-high point totals. The Great Danes, who have consistently out-rebounded opponents all season, were outmanned by the Black Bears on the boards by a 37-30 margin, but shot 38.5 percent from the floor while holding Maine to a 35.9 shooting percentage.
UAlbany (11-7, AE 5-0) will return to action on Monday in a key America East matchup, hosting Boston U. at SEFCU Arena. The Terriers, who were picked second in the league's preseason poll, are the only other undefeated team in the conference standings.