BANGOR – The University of Maine at Farmington men’s basketball team was locked in a tightly played matchup with Division I University of Maine for nearly 35 of the game’s 40 minutes during Friday evening’s cross-state matchup at the Cross Insurance Center.
But those remaining five minutes proved pivotal in leading the Black Bears to a 71-52 win over the Beavers in UMF’s 2021-22 season opener.
A 6-0 run by the Black Bears in the final minute of the first half allowed UMaine to take a 35-28 advantage into the locker room at halftime, after a Terion Moss three-pointer had pulled the Beavers to within one of the Black Bears, 29-28, with 1:15 showing on the clock.
UMF and UMaine had been tied at 13-13 midway through the opening half on Nathan Poulin’s jumper at the 9:51 mark of the frame. The Beavers shot just .375 (9-of-24) from the field in the opening stanza compared to the Black Bears’ .417 (15-of-36) field goal percentage, but UMF out rebounded UMaine, 22-19, in the first 20 minutes. Moss led the Beavers through the first half with 14 points.
A second UMaine run late in the game proved to be too much for UMF, after the Beavers managed to stay within striking distance through much of the second half.
Dylan Griffin’s layup with 6:51 remaining pulled UMF to within eight of UMaine, 56-48, and capped a 6-0 run by the Beavers. The Black Bears rattled off 13 unanswered points over the next four-and-a-half minutes, culminating with a layup by UMaine’s Byron Ireland with 1:56 to play to give the Black Bears a 69-48 lead.
A pair of foul shots by UMF’s Brian Austin at the 1:36 mark officially ended the Black Bears’ run, cutting the margin to 69-50 before each side added two points down the stretch.
Moss and Jack Kane each finished with 14 points to lead UMF, with Kane hauling down 13 boards to complete the double-double – the 11th of his collegiate career. All of Moss’ points were in the first half.
UMaine also had two players in double digits, led by Stephane Ingo with 13 points to go with 11 rebounds. Adefolalrin Adetogun tallied 11 points for the Black Bears.
UMF out rebounded UMaine, 44-43, and the Beavers (.235 3FG pct., 4-of-17) outperformed their Division I cousins (.200 3FG pct., 4-of-20) from three-point range. Overall, UMF shot .327 (17-of-52) from the field while UMaine finished the night with a .361 field goal percentage (26-of-72). The Beavers were hampered by 26 turnovers leading to 25 Black Bear points.
UMF will make its home debut on Saturday, Nov. 13, at 3 p.m. when the Beavers welcome UMaine-Fort Kent to Dearborn Gymnasium. All spectators to UMF home basketball games are required to wear masks, and provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen; “at home” tests not accepted) taken within 72 hours prior to the game. Complete information available at www.goUMFbeavers.com/COVID.