November 13, 2011

Men's Hoop Set to Battle BC in Road Tilt (Nov. 14)

GAME NOTES (PDF)

DURHAM, N.H.
- The University of New Hampshire men's basketball team will look to remain undefeated on its young season taking on Boston College at Conte Forum on Monday, Nov. 14 at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on the Wildcat Sports Radio Network. Links to live audio and live video, as well as live stats, will be available at www.UNHWildcats.com.

LAST TIME OUT
Seniors Alvin Abreu (Lynn, Mass.) and Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.) notched 19 and 17 points, respectively, propelling the University of New Hampshire men's basketball team to 85-64 victory over Suffolk University on Friday evening at Lundholm Gymnasium.

The Wildcats improve to 1-0 on the season, earning their sixth straight home-opening victory. New Hampshire is now 5-0 all-time against Suffolk, with all five decisions coming at Lundholm Gymnasium.

Benson was named the America East Player of the Game, pulling down 16 boards, as he earned his third career double-double. He finished the evening shooting an impressive 7-for-13 from the floor.

Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Pa.) and Jordon Bronner (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) also notched double-digits for the 'Cats, tallying 18 and 15 points, respectively. Patrick Konan (Gainesville, Fla.) chipped in with seven points, eight boards and four assists.

The Wildcats outshot Suffolk 53.2 percent (33-62) to 46.3 percent (25-54) from the field and 50.0 percent (9-18) to 46.2 percent (6-13) from beyond the arc. New Hampshire also held the edge on the glass, outrebounding the Rams by a margin of 39-31 in the contest. 

UNH kicked off a 9-0 run, its longest run of the first frame, as Abreu sparked the stretch with a midrange jumper at 14:16. New Hampshire scored on three straight possessions to cap off the stretch, as Bronner finished off the run, notching a layup to put the home team up 25-10 at 12:50.

UNH posted a 23-point edge, its greatest of the game, with just over a minute remaining when Abreu pushed the ball up the floor and set up Benson with a layup to push the score to 51-28 in favor of the home team. The Wildcats held a 51-30 edge at the break, shooting an impressive 64.7 percent (22-34) from the floor and 66.7 percent (6-9) from long range.

The Rams made it game with just over six minutes remaining in regulation, stringing off an 8-0 run, sparked by a Jevic Muteba layup, cutting the score to 70-61 at 4:35.

However, the Widcats were able to find their offensive rhythm shortly thereafter, piecing together a 9-3 run that pushed their advantage to 15 with just under two minutes to play. Four points by Bronner, including three the old-fashioned-way, helped provide the spark the 'Cats needed as they owned a 79-64 edge at the end of the stretch.

THE MATCHUP
Boston College leads the all-time series against UNH, 22-6, with its last victory coming in a 67-57 decision on Nov. 10, 2007. The Eagles have notched 10 straight wins versus the Wildcats, with UNH's last victory coming on Dec. 1, 1986 when it claimed a 51-49 win at Lundholm Gymnasium. In the most recent meeting between the two squads, Tyrece Gibbs led the Wildcats, tallying 17 points in the first half alone en route to a team-high 22-point effort. Dane DiLiegro pulled down 11 boards to lead the Wildcats in addition to seven points. The Wildcats, who trailed by as many as 15 (20-5) with 11:34 to go in the first half, stopped the Eagles momentum, holding them scoreless for over five minutes. With 7:35 remaining, Gibbs and Eric Gilchrese combined for 12 points to lead the Wildcats on a 12-0 run. The Wildcats took the lead during the run on a Gilchrese 3-pointer with 2:37 remaining. New Hampshire, who lost to the Eagles by 40 points just the season prior, took a two-point lead into the locker room at halftime. The momentum got back on the home team's side. Led by an 18-point second-half effort by Rakim Sanders, the Eagles took the lead for good, 44-41, with 12:14 remaining. Sanders totaled a team-high 22 points and six rebounds in the game for the Eagles. Biko Paris chipped in with 19 points in the game for Boston College. The Wildcats remained in the game, coming as close as three points, 56-52, with 3:32 remaining.

SCOUTING BOSTON COLLEGE
Boston College opened up the season with a 70-66 victory in an exhibition victory over American International College at Conte Forum on Nov. 5. Freshmen Dennis Clifford and Patrick Heckmann combined for 33 points to lead Boston College to the win. Clifford finished 8-for-9 from the field for his 17 points while Heckman went 8-for-10 from the foul line. Graduate student John Cahill was a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond the arc. Freshman Ryan Anderson led BC with seven rebounds while Heckmann, junior Matt Humphrey and sophomore Gabe Moton each had three assists. BC outshot AIC 56.4 percent (22-39) to 40.0 percent (22-55) from the floor and 35.3 percent (6-17) to 25.0 percent (3-12) from long range. The Eagles were selected 12th in the Atlantic Coast Conference's preseason men's basketball media poll. Boston College finished the 2010-11 season with a 21-13 record, including a 9-7 mark in conference play.

CLIMBING THE CHARTS
Senior guard Alvin Abreu (Lynn, Mass.) led UNH with 19 points against Suffolk (Nov. 11) moving up to 11th place on the program's all-time scoring list. Abreu needs just 21 points to move past Billy Pappas (1,228), who ranks 10th all-time in scoring. He has now scored in double-digits in four of the last six games spanning over the course of the last three seasons.

DOUBLE-DOUBLE TROUBLE
Senior center Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.) notched his third career double-double, tallying 17 points and 16 rebounds against Suffolk (Nov. 11). The captain earned a pair of double-doubles last season, with his most recent coming against Hartford (Feb. 27) when he registered 16 points and 15 boards. He finished the 2010-11 campaign pulling in double-digit rebounds in eight games while scoring in double-figures in three outings.

50/50 CHANCE
The Wildcats shot an impressive 53.2 percent (33-62) from the field and 50 percent (9-18) from deep against Suffolk (Nov. 11). New Hampshire was especially impressive in the first half of the contest, registering 51 points on 64.7 percent (22-34) shooting from the field and 66.7 percent (6-9) shooting from 3-point range. The last time UNH shot above 50 percent in both categories was last season against UMBC (Jan. 23) when the 'Cats earned an 80-60 victory over the Retrievers. New Hampshire finished the contest with a shooting clip of .510 from the field and .519 from beyond the arc.

CAREER NIGHT
Senior center Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.) and sophomore guard Jordon Bronner (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) both registered career highs in points versus Suffolk (Nov. 11). Benson tallied 17 points in the game, reaching the mark on 7-for-13 shooting. His previous career high (16) came last season against Hartford (Feb. 27). As for Bronner, not only did he reach a career high in points, but he also matched career bests in field goals made (5), free throws made (4), and three-point field goals made (1) in the contest.

O CAPTAIN MY CAPTAIN
Alvin Abreu (Lynn, Mass.), Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.), Ryan Herrion (Dover, N.H.) and junior Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Va.) have been named captains for the upcoming 2011-12 season.

Abreu was a co-captain for the Wildcats last year, but missed the majority of the season due to injury. The year prior, he stepped up his offensive game bumping his average up to 14.4 points per game en route to becoming the 27th Wildcat in program history to reach the 1,000-point plateau. The 2008 All-Rookie Team member was selected to the America East All-Conference Second Team and also took home Player of the Game honors for earning the most America East Player of the Game awards during the 2009-10 campaign. 

Benson is coming off a breakout junior campaign, leading the Wildcats on the glass with 8.3 boards per game, ranking second among league leaders. Additionally, he posted 5.6 points per game and ranked fifth in the conference in blocks with 32. He finished the year garnering America East All-Academic Team honors for the second straight season.

Herrion appeared in 17 games off the bench for the 'Cats in 2010-11, averaging 3.6 minutes per contest. He had his best outing of the season against Central Connecticut State (Dec. 22) when he notched career highs in minutes played (22), assists (3) and rebounds (3).

Rhoads, a 2010-11 America East All-Defensive Team honoree, took a huge step forward offensively last season, registering 9.1 points and 2.8 assists per game. He finished the year strong, scoring in double-digits in nine of the final 10 games of the season. He was also one of just two Wildcats to start in all 30 games, finishing the season ranking first on the team and eighth in the conference in assists (85).

THE POLL IS IN
New Hampshire (39 points) was picked fifth in the America East Preseason Coaches' Poll. The Wildcats were tabbed to finish behind Boston U. (62), Stony Brook (56), Vermont (51) and Albany (42). The Terriers, who have topped the poll each of the last five years, garnered six first-place votes, while Stony Brook claimed the remaining three votes. Maine (32) was tabbed sixth, while Hartford (18), UMBC (18) and Binghamton (11) round out the rest of the poll.

TREY-MENDOUS STREAK FOR 'CATS
Heading into Monday's contest UNH has recorded at least one 3-pointer in 584 consecutive games, a streak that spans 20 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 802 games by UNLV, a streak that started Nov. 26, 1986 and is still active.

NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK
The Wildcats welcome in three newcomers this season. Garrett Jones (Chicago, Ill.) joins the Wildcats after averaging 14 points and five assists per game this year. As a senior, Jones led Evanston Township to an 18-11 record on its way to winning the CSL-South Conference Championship. Additionally, the McDonald's All-American nominee picked up All-Conference honors during his junior and senior years.

Tommy McDonnell (Durham, N.H.) comes to UNH after averaging seven points, four rebounds and two steals per game this year at Bridgton Academy. In the three years prior, McDonnell was a standout at Oyster River High School, posting 18 points and five boards per contest during his senior year. He also collected team MVP and Foster's Daily Democrat All-Dream Team honors, while playing in the New Hampshire versus Vermont all-star game during his senior campaign.

Jeron Trotman (Huntsville, Ala.) comes to UNH after spending the last two years with Centenary College. He finished his sophomore season leading the Gentlemen in blocks with 31, while also ranking second on the squad in points per game (9.0) and rebounds per game (6.2). Additionally, he also led the way in field goal percentage with a .460 shooting clip (86-187) from the floor. In the previous season he saw action in 24 contests, leading the team in field goal percentage once again with a 71 percent (37-52) mark. He also ranked second on the team with 18 swats, while averaging 3.6 points and 2.3 rebounds per game.

HERRION CLIMBING WINS LIST
By defeating Holy Cross, 55-52, Nov. 20, head coach Bill Herrion recorded his 61st victory at UNH and moved into fourth on the school's all-time wins list, passing Bill Olsen, who won 60 games in six seasons from 1960-66. Herrion now trails only Gerry Friel (188), William Cowell (119), and Henry Swasey (108) in the record books. Herrion has compiled 71 wins in stint as bench boss for the Wildcats.

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, visit www.CollegeChalkTalk.com/coachesDiary/new_hampshire.

UNH HOOPS ON WILDCATS.TV
UNH and Pack Network have once again partnered to provide online video streaming of UNH athletics for the upcoming 2011-12 season with UNHwildcats.Tv. Wildcat fans are encouraged to buy the "Wildcat All-Access Pass" which is an annual subscription for $99.95 that provides all the live coverage of UNH home athletic events. Fans can also purchase home events on a per game basis of $9.95.

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. These three aforementioned stations – along with WUVR-AM 1490 (Lebanon), WNTK-FM 99.7 (New London) and WCNL-AM 1010 (Newport) – will carry all UNH football and men's hockey broadcasts, a select number of men's and 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 31st year broadcasting UNH men's basketball. Jeannotte will be joined by color analyst Mike Murphy, who enters his 12th season calling Wildcat men's hoop.

WILDCAT BASKETBALL STREAMING LIVE
UNHWildcats.com, via Stretch Internet Broadcast, will carry 14 UNH men's basketball home games, as well as one road contest 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.
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