TROY — Even after going up by 13 points just past the midway point of the first half, the UAlbany men’s basketball team couldn’t finish off Maine and find a way out of their current skid on Saturday night, falling 72-68 in an America East matchup at Hudson Valley Community College.
The Great Danes committed 15 turnovers, which Maine translated into 18 points, and the Black Bears forged ahead in the final minutes to take the win.
It was the fifth loss in a row for UAlbany (6-17, 1-7 overall), which now sits two full games behind Maine (3-5, 9-12) in the race for the eighth and final spot in the America East postseason tournament.
After UAlbany led through much of the first half, going up as many as 13 after a 12-0 run around the midpoint of the half, Maine closed within five by halftime before the game settled into a back-and-forth pattern, featuring nine lead changes and seven ties.
Aaron Reddish gave UAlbany its final lead of the game when a 3-pointer made it 63-62 with 3:58 left in regulation, but Maine’s Ja’Shonte Wright-Mcleish’s jumper gave the Black Bears the lead for good 32 seconds later.
UAlbany’s Gerald Drumgoole Jr. turned the ball over twice in the final minute as Maine pushed its lead to 70-65, and while an off-balance Sarju Patel 3-pointer got the Great Danes back within two with 9.1 seconds left, Maine’s Ata Turgut knocked down a pair of late free throws to seal the victory.
All five UAlbany starters logged double figures in the scoring column, led by Jonathan Beagle with 16 points, Drumgoole and Reddish with 14 points each and Patel and Marcus Jackson with 10 points apiece. Drumgoole dished out a team-high seven assists, and Jackson grabbed eight rebounds.
Wright-Mcleish led Maine with 16 points, Gedi Juozpaitis added 15, Jayden Clayton scored 12 and Kellen Tynes chipped in 11 points and five of Maine’s 10 steals.
UAlbany will attempt to bounce back Wednesday at 6 p.m. when the squad travels to Lowell, Massachusetts to face UMass Lowell. The River Hawks were the last team that the Great Danes beat, powering to an 89-63 win on Jan. 8 at Hudson Valley.
GAZETTE COVERAGEEnsure access to everything we do, today and every day, check out our subscribe page at DailyGazette.com/Subscribe
More from The Daily Gazette:
Categories: College Sports, Sports, UAlbany