ORONO (AP) – Maine women’s basketball coach Ann McInerney apologized Friday for an incident in which she allegedly gave a false name to a state trooper as her top assistant was being charged withdrunken driving last month.

McInerney, who was a passenger in associate coach Kathy Karlsson’s car, said she “learned a valuable lesson from this situation.”

“As the head coach, I have a serious responsibility to model good behavior and to lead this program in a way that reflects the values and ideals of the University of Maine,” she said in a statement released through the university.

Her associate coach, Kathy Karlsson, was suspended for three games after her arrest on Nov. 5 and missed a Thanksgiving holiday tournament in Minneapolis.

There was no punishment disclosed for McInerney, but she said Athletic Director Blake James and President Robert Kennedy “made clear their displeasure and disappointment.”

“I have a responsibility to them to act and lead in the best interests of the university. I accept the consequences, and pledge to conduct myself in the most professional and responsible manner possible,” she said.

Karlsson was behind the wheel of her Volkswagen Jetta when it was spotted weaving across the yellow line on Mt. Hope Avenue in Bangor just after midnight, according to a report by Trooper Chris Hashey. She failed a field sobriety test and had a blood alcohol content of 0.15 percent, according to the report.

Karlsson’s attorney entered a plea of not guilty in court on Thursday.

During the incident, McInerney spelled her last name as “Martin” when questioned by the trooper, according to the report. It’s unclear whether providing the phony name could lead to charges. The district attorney’s office had no comment Friday.

The Black Bears are off to a 5-1 start for first time since 1997-98 season. Both McInerney and Karlsson are in their second season at Maine.

AP-ES-12-01-06 1544EST


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