The Maine men’s basketball team had just snapped a 13-game losing streak, and you could have heard a pin drop.

Coach Bob Walsh did his customary postgame radio interview, walked into the locker room, clapped his hands and yelled out, “Great job!”

His players were motionless, staring at the floor.

“I said, ‘I get it. It’s like in baseball when a rookie hits his first home run,'” Walsh said of the old-school silent treatment he was receiving. “They all just laughed and jumped up, and we celebrated. It was awesome. I give them a ton of credit. Somebody showed a little moxie coming up with that one.”

The Black Bears knocked off Hartford 70-61 Sunday, getting 25 points from freshman Kevin Little to run their record to 2-18 and 1-6 in America East play. Next up is a 7 p.m. game Wednesday against rival New Hampshire at Bangor’s Cross Insurance Center.

Little made 5 of 10 3-pointers at Hartford, and senior Zarko Valjarevic connected on 4 of 6, including two clutch 3s late in the game. The Hawks, meanwhile, sank only 5-of-32 shots from beyond the arc, falling to 11-9, 4-3.

With forward Garet Beal out with bruised ribs, Walsh played a four-guard lineup. He figured as long as they could defend and rebound effectively, it gave him his best offensive squad. There were times he even went with five guards, none taller than 6-foot-5.

The defense was solid and the rebounds ended up 37 apiece. Guards Shaun Lawton and Aaron Calixte each grabbed eight defensive boards. Reserve guard Troy Reid-Knight, at 6 feet, was forced to guard the Hartford center at times.

Whatever. It worked.

“I told them, ‘You’re going to have to guard bigger guys, and you have to stay out of foul trouble, and you’re not going to come out. So don’t look at me,'” Walsh said. “It comes down to the level of fight.

“Hopefully, there’s a lot more confidence, and you can sense the trust and belief growing.”

Calixte and Little were able to get into the paint at will, either finding open teammates on the perimeter (Calixte had six assists), or making layups or drawing fouls. Maine had 19 assists on its 25 made baskets.

“He can score and he can create for other people, so he draws a lot of attention,” Walsh said of the fearless, 160-pound Little. “He’s got a really explosive first step. Our penetrate-and-kick game was really good.”

Walsh was also gratified that, when Hartford rallied late to take a four-point lead, the Black Bears fought back to earn the win. Little and Valjarevic had the answers.

“When you’re going through it, that’s not exactly comfortable,” Walsh said of losing the lead. “But after you win, you look back and say, that’s important, that we were able to regroup.”

THE MAINE WOMEN’S team puts its six-game winning streak on the line at 7 p.m. Thursday against rival New Hampshire in Bangor. The Wildcats, off to their best start in a quarter-century, are tied with the Black Bears at 6-1 in second place in America East.

Freshman center Carlie Pogue has been a difference maker for New Hampshire, winning the league’s rookie of the week honors for a third consecutive week. She has four double-doubles this season.

Maine junior forward Liz Wood has been even hotter lately. She also has four double-doubles this winter, the latest in Sunday’s 56-42 victory at Maryland-Baltimore County. She recorded the program’s first triple-double two weeks ago and put up 30 points last week in a victory over Vermont, something no Black Bear had done in eight years.

Coach Richard Barron paid her the ultimate compliment after that game.

“Everybody is better when Liz is in the game,” he said. “They play off of her wherever she is in the offense better. She’s the hardest one to take out of the game, just because you want to give everybody you’re putting in the game the opportunity to play with her, too. It isn’t always the points that happen. It’s the rebounds, it’s the communication, the leadership, the defense. We call her our Swiss Army knife. She’s got all the tools in one convenient little package.”

Maine leads America East in attendance, and a crowd of up to 3,000 is expected at the UNH game.