DURHAM, N.H. - The University of New Hampshire men's basketball team will take on Binghamton University on Saturday, Jan. 30 (7 p.m.) at the Events Center for the first time since their meeting in the semifinals last season. Links to live audio and video, as well as live stats, will be available at www.UNHWildcats.com.
The Wildcats and Bearcats meet for just the 18th time in their short conference rivarly, with Binghamton leading the all-time series, 13-4. The Bearcats have won nine of the last 10 matchups, including six straight. Binghamton is also 7-1 at Lundholm Gymnasium, having won seven straight after losing its first game there Feb. 2, 2002. On the road, the Wildcats are losing the series, 5-3, but have been victorious in three of their past six contests at the Events Center. In the previous tilt at the Events Center, the Wildcats dropped a heartbreaking 70-69 decision in overtime in front of 5,222 fans – the largest regular-season crowd in the history of the Events Center. In the most recent meeting, the Wildcats dropped another heartbreaking decision, 72-67, in the semifinal round of the America East Championship at SEFCU Arena.
Senior guard Tyrece Gibbs and junior guard Colbey Santos scored 18 and 17 points, respectively, to lead the Wildcats.
The ‘Cats wrapped up their most successful season in nearly 15 years at 14-16 overall. The 14 wins were the most for the program since winning 19 games during the 1994-95 season. The Bearcats improved to 22-8 and advanced to the championship game versus No. 6 UMBC.
Gibbs played like a senior in his final game, extending his double-digit scoring streak to a career-best nine games, during which he averaged 18.8 points per game. Gibbs also added five rebounds, five assists and two blocks in 38 minutes. Santos stepped up in a huge way, playing his best game in a Wildcat uniform with a career-high 17 points on 5 of 7 shooting, including 4 of 5 from behind the arc. Santos also tallied seven rebounds, an assist and two steals in 22 minutes off the bench.
Trailing 59-58 with just under four minutes to play in the game, the Wildcats received another big basket from Santos, who knocked down a 3-pointer to put his team up two. Tiki Mayben gave Binghamton the lead back with three at the line, but a pair of free throws from senior guard Eric Gilchrese leapfrogged the Wildcats back into the lead at 63-62 with 3:25 to play.
The Wildcats did not let up as Gibbs made back-to-back layups to match their largest lead of the game at 67-62 with 2:22 remaining. Just as it looked like Binghamton was fading, however, D.J. Rivera drilled a 3-pointer from the top of the key to cut the deficit to two before Reggie Fuller converted an old fashioned three-point play to give the Bearcats a 68-67 lead at 1:18.
UNH had the ball down one with 11 seconds left when Rivera tipped an inbound pass and coasted in for a dunk that extended the lead to three. A turnover on the ensuing inbound pass forced the Wildcats to send Mayben to the stripe where he sunk both to seal the win. In his final collegiate game, Gilchrese tallied eight points, three rebounds and five assists.
In front 36-34 to start the second half, the Wildcats clamped down on defense and held Binghamton without a field goal for six possessions over a span of 3:50. UNH only scored on two of those possessions, however, receiving a free throw from Gilchrese and a 3-pointer from Gibbs that opened up a 39-34 lead at 18:13.
Mayben matched the trey with one of his own to snap the drought and get his team its first score of the half at 16:09. Rivera quickly followed with a layup 39 seconds later to tie the game at 39, before Mayben put Binghamton on top with another 3-pointer at 14:29.
The deficit was four for the Wildcats just half a minute later when Gibbs sliced it to one with a 3. Gilchrese then found sophomore center Dane DiLiegro underneath for a dunk that put UNH up 44-43 at 12:16. Rivera responded, however, finishing a layup as he was fouled before capitalizing at the line to put his team up two.
After Santos tied it with a pair from the stripe, layups by Fuller and Malik Alvin pushed Binghamton’s lead to four at 9:01. Santos rose to the occasion again in the absence of perimeter threats Alvin Abreu and Tyrone Conley, drilling a 3-pointer to cut it to 50-49. Rivera answered with a 3 of his own before junior forward Radar Onguetou sank a jumper to pull UNH within two.
With the deficit at three, Santos swiped the ball from Alvin and pushed it ahead to Conley, who threw down an acrobatic dunk to get within one. Conley was fouled hard to the ground by Fuller, however, and had to leave the game. Fuller was called for a hard foul, which gave the Wildcats two shots and the ball. Gibbs, taking the shots for Conley, sank one of two at the line, but drilled a 3 on the ensuing possession to give his squad a 57-54 lead at 6:54. Mayben responded by converting a three-point play to tie the game and then Rivera hit two at the line to put Binghamton on top 59-57 and set up the dramatic final five minutes.
DiLiegro recorded four points, six rebounds, a block and two steals, while Onguetou posted six points, a game-high eight rebounds and a block. Conley chipped in with eight points and two boards.
The game started as a back-and-forth affair for the first five minutes, but after Conley sank a 3-pointer to put UNH up 10-9, Binghamton ripped off an 11-0 run to take a 20-10 lead midway through the opening frame. In their biggest game of the season the Wildcats did not go away, responding with a 10-0 run that was sparked with a Santos trey and capped with a Santos layup that knotted the game at 20 with 6:52 remaining.
Binghamton then scored five straight and was up by that many until Gilchrese buried a 3 to close to within 28-26 at 3:17. Mayben and sophomore center James Valladares traded jumpers, before Onguetou and Mayben switched baskets to keep the Bearcat lead at two. Valladares tied it at 32 with another bucket, but an Alvin layup kept the lead at two. Gibbs then went 4-for-4 from the line in the final 52 seconds to send UNH into the locker room with a 36-34 lead. The Wildcats fell to 9-2 when leading at halftime. Valladares finished with four points, three boards, a block and a steal in 12 minutes off the bench.
Gibbs finished his UNH career in fifth place on the program’s all-time scoring list with 1,329 points. The captain also left with the second most 3-pointers made in a career at 233, including 87 this year, which tied the most treys in a single season at UNH. Gibbs is all over the school’s record books, including first in games played (117), second in minutes (3,711) and blocks (60) and sixth in 3-point field goal percentage (.394).
UNH was outshot 41 percent (22-54) to 38 percent (22-58) from the floor, but held the upper hand from beyond the arc where it shot 43 percent (9-21) compared to Binghamton’s 33 percent (6-18). The Wildcats held the advantage on the glass at 40-35, and only turned the ball over one more time (15) than the Bearcats (14).
Rivera led Binghamton with 26 points, eight rebounds and three steals, while Mayben added 19 points, four boards, two assists, and three steals.
LAST TIME OUT
Juniors Alvin Abreu and Tyrone Conley scored 21 points apiece and sophomore Russell Graham recorded a career-high 12 assists to propel the Wildcats to a 75-56 victory against the Vermont on Jan. 27 in America East action at Lundholm Gymnasium in front of 2,355 fans.
UNH improved to 7-1 at home - matching its best home start since the 1994-95 season - as well as 8-10 overall and 3-4 in America East with its second consecutive win - its first back-to-back wins of the season. UVM suffered its third straight defeat and fell to 14-8, 5-3. Coming into the game, Vermont’s nine road victories were the most in the country, while its seven-game road-winning streak was also tops in the nation before dropping its last two contests.
Conley, UNH’s America East Player of the Game, netted 21 points on 8 of 18 shooting from the floor, including 3 of 6 from 3-point range, and 2-for-2 from the foul line. He also contributed a team-high seven rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals. Abreu made all five of his 3-point attempts and was also 2-for-2 from the line en route to 21 points. He also pulled down five boards and added two assists. Graham, who committed just one turnover to 12 assists in a career-best 37 minutes, scored six points.
Marqus Blakely was named Vermont’s America East Player of the Game with 17 points, 11 rebounds, four blocks and three steals.
It was the largest crowd for a UNH men’s game at Lundholm Gym since Jan. 28, 2006, when 2,384 fans witnessed UVM defeat the Wildcats, 64-56.
UNH led 31-23 at the half and improved to 8-1 when ahead at the break this season. Maurice Joseph opened the second half with a 3-pointer and after Abreu answered with a trey of his own, Joseph came back with another 3 to slice the Wildcat lead to 34-29. After Abreu and Garvey Young traded baskets, Conley and Abreu knocked down consecutive triples to push the lead to 42-31 with 14:10 remaining.
After a Blakely three-point play later cut the Catamount deficit to eight, Graham and Conley hooked up on an alley-oop that sent the crowd wild and sparked a 12-5 UNH run. Graham led a 2-on-1 break down the left side of the court and tossed the ball to the far side of the hoop when Conley elevated, reached back and caught the ball with one hand before throwing it down.
An Abreu layup widened the lead to 12 and after Blakely and senior Radar Onguetou traded buckets, Conley took another feed and finished off a one-handed slam to make it 54-40 with 6:09 to play. Vermont whittled the lead down to 11 before layups by junior Dane DiLiegro and Conley widened it to 15.
With 3:16 to go, another Conley 3 opened the lead up to 16 at 63-47 before Abreu added the exclamation point - a 3-pointer with 19 seconds left that gave the Wildcats their largest lead of the game and closed the scoring at 75-56.
UNH outscored Vermont, 44-33, in the second half and also outrebounded the Catamounts, 36-27, including, 28-12, in the second stanza.
Onguetou scored seven points on 3 of 4 shooting, added four rebounds and played great defense on Blakely as he helped force him into eight turnovers. DiLiegro, meanwhile, posted six points and seven boards.
The Wildcats trailed 8-2 to start the game before consecutive 3s by Abreu, and another trey from classmate James Valladares, fueled a 9-0 run that gave them an 11-8 lead with 13:09 to play in the opening half. Vermont scored six straight and lead by three before Graham was driven to the ground while he made a layup, and finished off the three-point play at the line to tie the game at 14 with 8:43 remaining.
The game was tied at 16 when an 11-1 run - highlighted by 3-pointers from Conley, Onguetou and freshman Ferg Myrick - busted the game open and gave UNH a 29-19 lead at 1:59 that they would hold for good. Back-to-back baskets from Joseph and Blakely cut the deficit to six, but Conley drained a jumper from 18 feet with five seconds left to send his team into the locker room with a 31-23 lead.
Valladares tallied five points, four rebounds, an assist and a steal, while also doing a good job defensively on Blakely. Myrick gave the Wildcats another good lift off the bench with nine points, four boards and a steal in 16 minutes.
The Wildcats outshot Vermont, 44.8 percent (26-58) to 41.3 percent (19-46), from the floor, including 61.1 percent (11-18) to 27.3 percent (3-11) from behind the arc. UNH also held Vermont, who owns the second best offense in the league, to its second lowest point total of the season. Only Delaware held the Catamounts to fewer points this season when it scored a 56-50 decision at Vermont on Dec. 20.
Evan Fjeld and Joseph scored 13 and 10, respectively, for Vermont.
HOME, SWEET HOME
The Wildcats have started out the season 7-1 at home for the first time since the 1997-98 campaign when they won seven of their first eight games in Durham. The next best home start was 10-1 during the 1982-83 season. The ‘Cats have been victorious in 10 of their last 11 home contests dating back to last year.
Juniors Tyrone Conley and Alvin Abreu each scored 21 points in the Wildcats’ 75-56 win versus Vermont on Jan. 27. It was the second time this season, as well as in their careers that the two have scored 20 or more in the same game. The duo also accomplished the feat in a 69-59 win against Dartmouth on Dec. 20.
In the Wildcats’ 75-56 victory against Vermont on Jan. 27, sophomore point guard Russell Graham handed out a career-high 12 assists, while only turning the ball over once in a career-best 37 minutes. As a team, the ‘Cats recorded 19 assists – the most assists they have had against a Division I team this season – on 26 field goals.
OTHER SEASON BESTS VS. VERMONT
In the 75-56 win versus Vermont on Jan. 27, the Wildcats reached a season high against Division I opponents in points (75), as well as season bests in blocks (7) and attendance (2,355). The attendance was the highest at Lundholm Gymnasium since 2,384 fans watched Vermont beat UNH, 64-56, Jan. 28, 2006.
NATIONALLY RANKED (AS OF JAN. 28)
UNH is ranked within the top 100 teams in the country in a trio of categories. The Wildcats are 28th in scoring defense (60.7 ppg), 65th in 3-point field goal defense (.313) and 72nd in field goal percentage defense (.405). Individually, Russell Graham is 28th in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.61) and 89th in assists (4.5), and Dane DiLiegro is 76th in rebounding (8.4 rpg).
The Wildcats have built on their solid defensive year a season ago and have only allowed more than 60 points in a game five times. The ‘Cats, who held the Big East’s Pitt to 47 points Dec. 4, lead the league in scoring defense at 60.7 ppg. UNH also leads the conference in 3-point field goal percentage defense at 31.3 percent and is third in field goal percentage defense at 40.5 percent.
'CATS AMONG LEAGUE LEADERS
A number of Wildcats find themselves in the top 10 on a handful of conference lists. Point guard Russell Graham ranks first in the league in assist-to-turnover ratio (+2.6) and third in assists (4.5 apg), Dane DiLiegro is third in rebounding (8.4 rpg) and sixth in field goal percentage (.469), Tyrone Conley is seventh in 3-pointers made per game (2.2), eighth in steals per game (1.3) and ninth in 3-point field goal percentage (.351), Radar Onguetou is 10th in rebounding (6.1 rpg), and Alvin Abreu is eighth in 3-pointers made per game (1.9).
TREY-MENDOUS STREAK FOR 'CATS
Heading into Saturday’s contest UNH has recorded at least one 3-pointer in 541 consecutive games, a streak that spans 17 years. The last time the ‘Cats did not tally a trey was in a 59-47 loss to Dartmouth College on Jan. 8, 1991, when they were 0-for-3 from behind the arc. The NCAA record is currently 759 games by UNLV, a streak that started Nov. 26, 1986 and is still active.
Junior Alvin Abreu is averaging 17.5 points per game this season at Lundholm Gymnasium, while adding 10.7 ppg on the road. Abreu is also shooting 44.1 percent (45-102) at home, but hitting on just 28.1 percent (34-121) of his shots away from Lundholm. The same trend holds true for the whole squad, which averages 70.0 ppg on 42.7 percent shooting at home and just 53.9 ppg on 34.5 percent shooting on the road.
JUNIOR TRIO SOLID IN CRUNCH TIME
Juniors Alvin Abreu, Tyrone Conley and Dane DiLiegro have stepped up down the stretch in games this season for the Wildcats. In the final five minutes, the three are a combined 32-for-58 (.552) from the field and 40 of 57 (.702) at the line. Inside of one minute, the trio is even better, shooting 8 of 14 (.571) from the floor and 24 of 29 (.828) at the stripe.
The combined record of the 10 teams UNH has lost to this season is 119-84 (.586). The Wildcats have suffered their defeats on the road at Maryland (14-5), Harvard (13-3), Pitt (16-4), Hofstra (10-12), Army (12-8), Santa Clara (9-14), Stony Brook (14-7), Hartford (6-15) and Maine (14-6), as well as at home to Boston U. (11-10).
CONFERENCE COACHING CONQUESTS
Head coach Bill Herrion is currently tops among active coaches and third overall in America East regular season conference victories. Herrion’s 134 conference wins are far and away better than the league’s other eight coaches, with Albany’s Will Brown the next closest with 64. Overall, Herrion sits behind only former Boston University head coach Dennis Wolff (152) and long-time Vermont head man Tom Brennan (147).
Freshman Ferg Myrick helped lead the Wildcats to their first road victory of the season, 62-58, at UMBC on Jan. 21 with a career-best 15 points on 6 of 9 shooting, including 2 of 3 from behind the arc. Myrick crafted a 12-0 run that pushed his team’s lead from 43-40 with 10:22 to play, to 52-43 with 7:08 remaining, and also fueled an 8-2 run earlier in the game that turned a two-point deficit into a two-point lead with a pair of 3-pointers.
Point guard Russell Graham really picked up his play over three games from Jan. 13-Jan. 18, averaging 5.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 5.7 assists and just 1.0 turnover per game during that span, which included lines of six points, eight rebounds and seven assists Jan. 18 at Maine and a career-high 11 points, five boards and six helpers Jan. 13 versus Albany. The sophomore also started contributing more offensively over five games from Jan. 7-Jan. 18, averaging 6.6 points per contest, with nine- and seven-point outings Jan. 7 against Boston U. and Jan. 10 at Stony Brook, respectively.
LATE TO THE PARTY
After not even attempting a 3-pointer in the first 46 games of his career, junior James Valladares has hit a trey in four consecutive contests from Jan. 10-Jan.18.
PARTY OF FIVE
In their 67-59 win against Albany on Jan. 13, the Wildcats had five scorers in double digits. It marked the first time they had five scorers with 10 or more points in a game since Jan. 4, 2004 when Craig Walls (14), Marcus Bullock (12), Blagoj Janev (11), Griffin Walker (11) and Roland Williams (10) all scored in double digits at home against Northeastern.
Junior Dane DiLiegro recorded a double-double of 13 points and 13 rebounds in the Wildcats’ 67-59 win against the Albany Great Danes on Jan. 13. DiLiegro, who also posted a double-double of 20 points and 16 boards against Boston U. on Jan. 7, submitted two double-doubles in a three-game span for the first time in his career.
Sophomore Russell Graham put together a solid night in the Wildcats’ 67-59 win against Albany on Jan. 13. The point guard scored a career-high 11 points on 3 of 6 shooting from the field, including 1 of 2 from behind the arc and added five rebounds, six assists and just two turnovers.
Junior Dane DiLiegro recorded his 500th career rebound with his third board of the game against Stony Brook on Jan. 10 to become the 90th player in America East history to reach the mark. DiLiegro is the second active leading rebounder in the conference behind Vermont’s Marqus Blakely.
FIRST TRIP DOWNTOWN
Against Stony Brook on Jan. 10, junior James Valladares broke out for a career-high 11 points on 4 of 6 shooting, including 3 of 4 from 3-point land. Valladares, who played a season-high 23 minutes, had never even attempted a 3-pointer in his career coming into the game.
DOUBLE-DOUBLE FOR DOUBLE D
Dane DiLiegro was a monster inside for the Wildcats in their game against Boston U. on Jan. 7. DiLiegro netted 20 points and was one rebound shy of his career best, pulling down a season-high 16 boards as he recorded his second double-double of the season and seventh of his career. It was the highest point and rebound totals DiLiegro has reached in a single game during his career.
Ferg Myrick made the most of his 15 minutes against Boston U. on Jan. 7. The freshman chipped in with four points and added a block, but it was on the glass where he made his biggest impact. Myrick pulled down eight boards, including five on the offensive end.
GRAHAM ON POINT
Sophomore point guard Russell Graham continued his solid play for the Wildcats against Boston U. on Jan. 7 as he matched his career high with nine points and added five assists, four rebounds and steal, while only turning the ball over twice in a career-best 33 minutes.
In their Jan. 2 game at Santa Clara, juniors Tyrone Conley and Dane DiLiegro each recorded nine field goals, shooting 9-for-16 and 9-for-12 from the floor, respectively. The last time two Wildcats have posted nine or more baskets in the same game was Feb. 24, 1995 against Drexel and current head coach Bill Herrion. Scott Drapeau and Matt Alosa each tallied nine buckets for the ‘Cats at Lundholm Gymnasium as they were 9 of 23 and 9 of 24 on the night, respectively.
With his 63-55 win against Colgate on Dec. 30, head coach Bill Herrion earned his 50th career victory at UNH and became just the second coach in program history to record 50 wins in less than five full seasons. Gerry Friel, UNH’s all-time winningest coach, won 61 games in his first five years in Durham.
With their 63-55 win versus Colgate on Dec. 30, the Wildcats improved to 5-5 on the season, marking the first time the ‘Cats have reached New Year’s Day at .500 or better since they started the 1997-98 season at 5-5 through the first two months of the year.
The Wildcat defense once again played a strong role in the team’s 63-55 win against Colgate on Dec. 30. The ‘Cats held the Raiders withouth a field goal for the first 5:54 of the game and then sealed the win by forcing Colgate to miss all four of their shots over the final 32 seconds.
REELING IN THE REBOUNDS
In their 63-55 win against Colgate on Dec. 30, the Wildcats had three players record at least eight rebounds en route to holding a 46-31 advantage on the glass. Dane DiLiegro pulled in 10 boards, and Alvin Abreu and Radar Onguetou reeled in eight apiece as the ‘Cats posted their highest total versus a Division I opponent this season. UNH is now second in the league in rebounding margin (+2.2).
BOOT CAMP BOARDING
Juniors Dane DiLiegro matched his season high by pulling down 15 rebounds at Army on Dec. 22. DiLiegro also recorded 15 boards in the season opener versus Suffolk on Nov. 14.
CENTER OF ATTENTION
With starting center Dane DiLiegro in foul trouble for much of the Wildcats' 69-59 win against Dartmouth on Dec. 20, freshman center Chris Matagrano gave the ‘Cats a nice lift off the bench. Matagrano reached career highs in points (5) and rebounds (4) in 10 minutes.
WELL, THAT DIDN'T LAST VERY LONG
After setting season highs in field goal percentage and 3-point field goal percentage in their previous home game against Central Connecticut State, the Wildcats heated up again to erase those marks in a 69-59 win versus Dartmouth on Dec. 20. The ‘Cats shot 53.3 percent (24-45) from the field and 44.4 percent (4-9) from behind the arc against the Big Green.
SOMETHING GOOD ABREU-IN'
Junior Alvin Abreu erupted for a season-high 25 points in the Wildcats' 67-55 win against Central Connecticut State on Dec. 9. The total was Abreu's second highest of his career and most since he dropped 28 on Santa Clara at Lundholm Gymnasium on Jan. 4, 2009.
TICKLING THE TWINE
After a defensive struggle in their previous game at Pitt in which the Wildcats scored 32 points, they came in on fire versus Central Connecticut State and stayed hot throughout the game. The ‘Cats set season highs in shooting percentage from the field (.500), behind the arc (.429) and at the line (.750).
HERRION VS. WILDCATS' 2009-10 OPPONENTS
Coming into the season, Bill Herrion owned a 115-67 (.632) record against the Wildcats' 2009-10 opponents.
CAGING THE PANTHERS
In their 47-32 loss Dec. 4, the Wildcats held Pitt to its lowest scoring output since March 10, 2007 when Georgetown only allowed 42 points in a 65-42 win against the Panthers in the Big East title game at Madison Square Garden. Against UNH, Pitt was held scoreless for the first 5:15 of the game, did not convert its first field goal until 6:37 in, and went 15:30 before grabbing its first lead.
DILIEGRO NETS TOP WEEKLY HONOR
Junior Dane DiLiegro was named America East Player of the Week for the period ending Nov. 29, the conference announced Nov. 30.
DiLiegro earned the first weekly conference honor of his career after averaging 18.5 points and 8.0 rebounds per game in a 78-60 loss at Harvard on Nov. 25, as well as a 72-58 victory at home versus Marist on Nov. 28. DiLiegro also shot 50 percent (15-30) from the field and 78 percent (7-9) at the line in the two games.
At Harvard, DiLiegro posted a solid performance of 10 points and eight rebounds before exploding against Marist. DiLiegro scored a career-high 27 points on 11 of 19 shooting from the floor and 5 of 5 shooting at the line, while pulling down eight boards. DiLiegro had matched his career best after just 14 first-half minutes, and was single-handedly outscoring Marist at the break, 21-20.
Junior Dane DiLiegro scored a career-high 27 points as he was 11-for-19 from the floor and made all five of his free throws in a season-high 34 minutes against Marist on Nov. 28, making him the first Wildcat to record that many baskets in a game since Blagoj Janev was a perfect 11-for-11 from the field en route to 31 points against Vermont on Jan. 9, 2007. The 11 field goals marked the second time in his career that DiLiegro converted 10 or more field goals, as he knocked down 10 shots when he set his previous career best of 21 points Feb. 19 of last season versus Maine. The 27 points is also the most for a Wildcat since classmate Alvin Abreu netted 28 against Santa Clara on Jan. 4 of last season.
HERRION CLIMBING WINS LIST
By defeating Marist, 72-58, Nov. 28, head coach Bill Herrion recorded his 47th victory at UNH and moved into fifth on the school's all-time wins list, passing Gib Chapman, who won 46 games in four seasons from 1992-96. Herrion moved past Phil Rowe, who won 45 games in six seasons from 1999-05, with his 91-45 win against Suffolk on Nov. 14, and now trails only Gerry Friel (188), William Cowell (119), Henry Swasey (108) and Bill Olsen (60) in the record books.
DOUBLE-DOUBLE ON THE RADAR
Senior Radar Onguetou scored 11 points and tied his career high with 12 rebounds against Marist on Nov. 28 to record his second career double-double. Onguetou's first double-double came at UMBC on Jan. 25, 2007 when he recorded the same 11 points and 12 rebounds.
AMERICA EAST SEASONS BESTS
Against Marist on Nov. 28, a trio of Wildcats submitted three of the best performances in America East this season. Junior Dane DiLiegro poured in a career-high 27 points, the most in the conference at the time. Senior Radar Onguetou matched his career best by grabbing 12 rebounds, which tied for the third best mark in the league. Sophomore Russell Graham surpassed his previous career high by handing out seven assists, the fourth best America East mark on the year at the time.
PICKING IT BACK UP
Senior Colbey Santos picked up where he left off last season in the America East semifinal against Binghamton when he netted a career-high 17 points on 4 of 5 shooting from behind the arc. In the season opener against Suffolk on Nov. 14, Santos scored 10 points, before netting 14 points at 25th-ranked Maryland on Nov. 20. The three-game double-digit scoring streak is the longest of Santos' career and also matches the number of games Santos recorded 10 or more points in the previous 86 games of his career.
In the Wildcats' 82-55 loss at 25th-ranked Maryland on Nov. 20, the 27-point deficit was the Terps' smallest margin of victory of the season to that point.
In the Wildcats' 82-55 loss at 25th-ranked Maryland on Nov. 20, sophomore point guard Russell Graham grabbed a game-high and career-best eight rebounds. Graham, who measures an even 6-feet tall, was the only player under 6-2 to play in the game.
RHOAD TO SUCCESS
Freshman Chandler Rhoads was named America East Rookie of the Week for the period ending Nov. 15 the conference announced Nov. 16.
Rhoads shined for the Wildcats in the first collegiate game of his career against Suffolk on Nov. 14 as he scored a game-high 14 points and added five assists, four steals and three rebounds in 23 minutes of action during UNH's 91-45 win at Lundholm Gymnasium.
Rhoads became just the fifth Wildcat since the awards' inception in 1983 to win it the first week of the season, joining Todd Black (Dec. 10, 1983), Joe Spitale (Dec. 5, 1988), Will Chavis (Nov. 22, 1998) and Chris Vetrano (Nov. 21, 2004). The point guard was also the first Wildcat to garner the honor since current junior Alvin Abreu on Feb. 25, 2008.
CRASHING THE GLASS
Against Suffolk on Nov. 14, junior Dane DiLiegro pulled down 15 rebounds, which is the second highest total of his career.
Junior Alvin Abreu continued his pattern from last year of picking up his scoring in the second half. After going into the break with just two points against Suffolk on Nov. 14, Abreu came out and netted 10 in the second stanza to finish with 12. Abreu also added seven assists, five rebounds and three steals.
Sophomores Brian Benson and Russell Graham both set career highs versus Suffolk on Nov. 14. Benson scored a career-high nine points, while Graham dished out a then career-best six assists.
The Wildcats dished out an assist on 69 percent (22-32) of their baskets in their 91-45 win against Suffolk on Nov. 14. Last year the ‘Cats assisted on 50 percent (323-647) of their buckets.
In their 91-45 win against Suffolk on Nov. 14, the Wildcats blocked six shots, including three by freshman big man Chris Matagrano.
Head coach Bill Herrion and his staff announced Nov. 11 that Scott Morris has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Wildcats and attend school next fall.
"One of our needs with this year's recruiting class was to get a 2-guard that can shoot the basketball," Herrion said. "Losing Colbey Santos after this year and Alvin Abreu and Tyrone Conley being seniors next year, we have to make sure we have depth at the shooting guard spot. Scott is a tough, athletic kid, who can really shoot the ball from the 3. He is a total student-athlete and we are very happy to have him here at UNH."
Morris, who is currently a senior at Walkersville High School, averaged 18.6 points, 6.3 rebounds. 6.6 assists and 2.0 steals per game last season as he led the Lions to the regional finals and an 18-7 record. Morris was named to the Frederick News Post All-County First Team, as well as the All-Gazette First Team, and was First Team All-Piedmont Division. As a sophomore, the 6-foot-2-inch, 190-pound guard averaged 13.2 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists as an All-Piedmont Division first teamer. The three-year starter and two-time team MVP also performs well off the court as he is the owner of a 4.0 grade-point-average, which ranks No. 1 in his class of 328.
DEMPSEY ON COLLEGE CHALKTALK
Associate Head Coach Ken Dempsey will be blogging at various points of the season on College Chalktalk. To follow along with Dempsey's entries, click here.
WILDCAT BASKETBALL ON THE AIR
In the summer of 1999, the University of New Hampshire Athletic Department formed the "UNH Sports Network" - the largest network ever to broadcast UNH sporting events. Wildcats Sports Properties has added WGIN-AM 930 (Rochester) and WQSO-FM 96.7 (Portsmouth) as flagship stations on the Wildcat Sports Network, joining WGIR-AM 610 (Manchester), which was added in 2008. All three stations are part of the Clear Channel family and this change will go into effect at the beginning of the 2009-10 season. These three aforementioned stations - along with WUVR-AM 1490 (Lebanon), WNTK-FM 99.7 (New London) and WCNL-AM 1010 (Newport) - will carry the following: all UNH football & men's hockey broadcasts and weekly coaches' shows, a select number of men's basketball, women's basketball, and women's hockey broadcasts, as well as "Wildcat Sports Today", a three-minute daily update concerning UNH athletics. The games can also be heard on the internet at www.UNHWildcats.com, through a service from Stretch Internet. Stretch has also partnered with UNH to develop a podcast page for UNH fans to listen to archived broadcasts. Veteran play-by-play man Jim Jeannotte will return for his 29th year broadcasting UNH men's basketball. Jeannotte will be joined by color analyst Mike Murphy, who enters his 10th season calling Wildcat men's hoop.
WILDCAT BASKETBALL STREAMING LIVE
UNHWildcats.com, via Stretch Internet Broadcast, will carry 11 UNH men's basketball games, as well as a pair of road contests this season. If you cannot attend Wildcat basketball, you can still tune into the game from anywhere you can gain access to the internet. Fans can get to the UNH men's basketball broadcast site by going to the men's basketball schedule page at www.UNHWildcats.com.
UNH HOOPS ON WILDCATS.TV
UNH and Pack Network have once again partnered to provide online video streaming of UNH's seven ticketed sports for the upcoming 2009-10 season with UNHwildcats.Tv. Wildcat fans are encouraged to buy the "Wildcat All-Access Pass" which is an annual subscription for $79.95 that provides all the live coverage of UNH home athletic events. Fans can also purchase home events on a per game basis of $6.95.
Juniors James Valladares, Alvin Abreu and Dane DiLiegro all spent part of their summers representing their respective countries while playing basketball internationally. Valladares suited up for the El Salvador National Team at the FIBA COCABA Games in Cancun, Mexico, where he averaged 17.4 points per game. Abreu practiced with the Dominican National Team in Santo Domingo, where he battled with the likes of Francisco Garcia of the Sacramento Kings, Charlie Villanueva of the Detroit Pistons and Edgar Sosa, a senior at Louisville. DiLiegro played for the United States at the 18th Maccabiah Games in Israel. DiLiegro averaged 8.8 points and 5.2 rebounds per game en route to helping the Americans capture the gold medal.