Ashleigh Roberts (Wilmington, Del.) added 11 points and seven rebounds for the Black Bears who ended the game shooting 39.6% from the field while outrebounding the Catamounts 31-30.
The Catamounts had three scorers total double-figures as they were led by Annie Wheeler’s 14 points and four rebounds.
Vermont opened up its lead early with a 9-0 run on six points from Annie Wheeler, as the Catamounts led 11-4 with six minutes gone in the first half.
After a three-point shot from the top of the key by Wood, Vermont answered with a 9-2 run, extending its lead to 20-9 with 10:13 remaining in the opening half.
The teams traded hoops until the Catamounts took their largest lead of the half, leading by 13 with five-minutes to play.
Maine looked to end the half on a strong note as it closed the gap to nine with a minute left. The late 4-0 Black Bear run began when a pressure trap forced a Catamount turnover. Roberts broke out on the fastbreak before a late dish to Chantel Charles (London, U.K.) ended with a bucket. Maine forced another Catamount turnover on Vermont’s next possession as Courtney Anderson (Greene, Maine) came up with the steal and quick looped a pass down court to a sprinting Roberts who laid the ball up and off glass for two.
A three from Tierra Shumpert with just three-seconds remaining in the half extended the Catamount lead to 31-19 at the half.
Wood paced the Black Bear first half attack with nine points and five rebounds while Roberts added five points and four rebounds with a pair of steals. Maine, which shot 31.8% (7-22) in the opening half, outrebounded the Catamounts 16-13 in the opening stanza.
The Catamounts opened the second half on 7-0 run in the opening three minutes, extending their lead to 38-19.
Maine kept the pressure on as Wood stroked another three before the freshman forced a steal and raced down court, drawing a foul and hitting one to cut the lead to 40-25.
A 6-0 Vermont run off fastbreaks gave the Catamounts their largest lead of the game at 46-25.
Wood continued to fuel the Maine comeback as the Black Bears put together a 14-2 run to bring them all the way back within six with 9:29 to play. Wood started the run with a nice look inside to Mikaela Gustafsson (Sodertalje, Sweden) for two. After a pair of free throws from Wood, the freshman knocked down a three to bring Maine within 12. The run continued with a turn around jumper in the paint from Gustafsson before a pair of Roberts’ free throws cut the Catamount lead to just six.
Vermont answerd with another brief run to extend its lead back to 14, 61-47, with just over three minutes to play.
Maine finished the game strong on a 6-0 run but ran out of time as the Catamounts took the victory by a score of 61-53.
The Black Bears are back in action on Saturday when they welcome Stony Brook to Alfond Arena. Game time is scheduled for 2 PM.