Tanesha Sutton scored 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds, despite being limited by foul trouble.
But Sutton didn’t get much help Saturday afternoon, especially inside, and the short-handed Maine women’s basketball team lost 63-55 to the Northeastern Huskies in Cabot Gymnasium.
Northeastern, which was coming off its first loss of the season Tuesday at Marist, is now 10-1. Maine dropped to 7-4.
Sutton, the always-battling, 5-foot-10 senior forward, was leaned on heavily by the Black Bears in the absence of 6-1 Fanny Wadling, who is still out because of a concussion suffered last month.
Northeastern outrebounded Maine 45-27, including 19 offensive rebounds.
“We’re missing Fanny a lot, on the offensive and defensive boards,” Sutton said. “She really is a threat for us and it hurts not having her.”
Sutton picked up her third foul in the second quarter and her fourth foul late in the third quarter, and played only 29 minutes.
Northeastern’s 6-foot center, Gabby Giacone, hit some easy layups, scoring 13 points. Forward Ayanna Dublin had a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds, and backup point guard Stella Clark scored 15 points. Huskies guard Jess Genco, who averages 19 points, was guarded by Blanca Millan and was held to eight.
“They were making sure she didn’t get touches,” Northeastern Coach Kelly Cole said. “One thing that has helped us be successful is that we’re not just Jess.”
Millan finished with 11 points and five rebounds. But the Black Bears did not have enough weapons.
A telling moment came in the second quarter. Sutton picked up her third foul with 3:31 left and headed toward the bench, with Maine leading 27-25.
The Huskies finished the quarter on a 11-0 run, outrebounding the Black Bears 9-1, to take a 36-27 halftime lead.
Northeastern never trailed in the second half. Even when Sutton was in the game, the Huskies held their own and still owned the boards.
“This was not about Xs and Os. Northeastern was just tougher than us,” Maine Coach Amy Vachon said. “They went after the ball and played harder, and got the win.”
Vachon said there is no timetable for Wadling’s return.
“We’ve played without Fanny for a lot of games, so we’re used to it,” Vachon said. “When she comes back, that will be great.”
The Black Bears, who have lost two straight, next play in the Fordham Holiday Classic on Saturday. Maine opens America East play at home on Jan. 2 against New Hampshire.
“We have not played well the last couple of weeks,” Millan said. “We lost a real important player. We just have to keep working.”
NOTES: This was the 58th meeting between the onetime conference rivals, but only the fifth game since Northeastern left the America East Conference in 2005. Maine leads the series, 35-23. …
Shannon Todd, a 6-foot junior from York, started for Northeastern and recorded four points and seven rebounds. …
The Huskies have been to the NCAA tournament only once, in 1999, when they qualified by upsetting Maine in the America East final.