Albany, Maine Advance to Women's #AETourney Title Game
PORTLAND, Maine – The 2017 America East Women’s Basketball title game is set and it will be a rematch of the 2016 final as No. 2 seed Albany and No. 4 Maine advanced with semifinal wins on Sunday at Cross Insurance Arena in Portland, Maine. The championship game will be played on Friday, March 10 at 4:30 p.m. at University at Albany’s SEFCU Arena and will air live on ESPNU.
Fourth-seeded Maine upset the top-seed UNH, 61-52, to reach the program’s second-straight title game. Second-seeded Albany advanced to their sixth-straight final, which ties an America East record, with a 67-65 win over No. 6 Hartford. The Great Danes earned the right to host their sixth-straight title game by virtue of being the highest remaining seed left in the tournament. This will mark the first time since 2006 that the same two teams will meet in the final in back-to-back seasons.
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- Maine (17-15) used a 13-2 fourth quarter run to fuel a win over New Hampshire (26-5) to advance to its second-straight championship game.
- Overall, it will be the Black Bears 17th championship game appearance, a conference record.
- UNH held a 37-36 lead early in the fourth quarter, but a 13-2 Maine run gave the it a 49-39 lead, its largest of the game, with 4:11 left.
- The Black Bears outscored the Wildcats by 10 in the fourth quarter.
- Maine held New Hampshire, the league leader in field goal percentage at 41.8 percent shooting, to just a 30.6 mark in this game.
- First-team All-Conference selection Sigi Koizar led Maine with 21 points, four rebounds and four assists.
- America East Player of the Year Carlie Pogue led UNH with a double-double 13 points and 10 boards.
- New Hampshire, which won a program-record 26 games this year, will receive the conference's automatic bid to the WNIT.
- Maine is only the third No. 4 seed to beat a No. 1 seed and only the second since the tournament expanded beyond 4 teams. Hartford was the last to do it in 2011.
- Albany (19-11) grew a 12-point lead and held off a late charge from Hartford to reach the America East championship game for the sixth-straight year.
- Albany’s six-straight championship game appearances ties Maine (1995-2000) for the longest streak in conference history.
- The Great Danes, winners of five-straight league title, led by as many as 12 in the first half and by 10 with 1:44 left in the third quarter, but a 13-3 Hartford run capped by a Deanna Mayza three-pointer tied the game 58-58 with 5:51 left.
- First-team All-Conference selection Imani Tate’s jumper 2:02 left gave Albany a 67-63 lead and proved to be the difference.
- Albany held a 39-21 rebounding edge.
- Bailey Hixson scored a career-high 22 points and made six three-pointers to pace Albany.
- Jessica Fequire added a double-double of 13 points and 10 rebounds.
- Deanna Mayza and Lindsey Abed each had 14 points to lead Hartford (17-14).