December 7, 2011

Men's Basketball Outlasts Brown, 69-56

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Senior guard Alvin Abreu (Lynn, Mass.) led four Wildcats in double-figures with 18 points, as the University of New Hampshire men's basketball team took down Brown University, 69-56, on Wednesday evening at the Pizzitola Sports Center.

The Wildcats improve to 3-3 with the victory while Brown drops its third straight game, falling to 4-7.

Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Va.; 16), Patrick Konan (Gainesville, Fla.; 11), and Ferg Myrick (Philadelphia, Pa.; 10) also scored in double-digits, marking the third time this season four 'Cats have scored in double-figures. Rhoads and Konan added eight and seven rebounds, respectively.

Jordon Bronner (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y) chipped in with six points, eight rebounds and six assists in the contest.

Abreu was tabbed the America East Player of the Game, finishing the night 6-of-11 from the floor, 3-of-5 from deep and 3-of-4 from the charity stripe. He also added three boards and two steals.

New Hampshire finished the contest shooting 46.9 percent (23-49) from the field and 44.4 percent (8-18) from beyond the arc. The Wildcats were especially impressive in the second frame, finishing 48 percent (12-25) from the floor and 60 percent (6-10) from three-point land, outscoring the Bears 42-34 during the stanza.

The Wildcats opened the contest firing on all cylinders, putting together a 15-2 run that lasted 5:02. Konan capped off the run when he sent an inside-out pass to Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.) on the right wing and he drilled a trey at 14:58. Benson fueled the offensive spurt with five points while Konan and Rhoads each notched four points apiece.

Brown chipped away at the UNH lead midway through the first stanza as a pair of Sean McGonagill free throws set off a 14-3 run that knotted the score at 20-20 with 3:48 remaining.

New Hampshire battled back from the offensive lapse when Abreu dropped in a midrange jumper that sparked a 7-2 scoring run heading into the break. Myrick ended the stretch on a high note, sinking a trey from the left wing with 49 seconds remaining in the frame to push UNH ahead 27-22 heading into the locker room.

Konan helped keep up UNH's offensive presence at the start of the second stanza, scoring the first and last field goal of a 10-6 scoring stretch that gave the 'Cats a 37-28 edge with 14:25 remaining in regulation.

Despite the brief offensive spark, Brown came back scoring five unanswered points on its way to piecing together a 13-4 run that evened the score for just third time in the contest by a mark of 41-41 with 10:13 on the clock.

Both squads would trade baskets for the next 3:52 until Rhoads and Abreu knocked down 3-pointers on consecutive trips up the floor and Chris Matagrano (Sayreville, N.J.) added a free throw, pushing the lead to seven, 56-49, with 4:56 remaining.

Tyler Ponticelli responded notching three points the old-fashioned-way on the ensuing possession and Longi Yiljep sank one-of-two from the stripe, cutting UNH's lead down to just three.

Rhoads answered right back with 3-pointer next trip up the floor, doubling the advantage at 3:05. After Brown failed to score at the other end, Bronner drove right side and took on a pair of defenders, finishing with a layup off the glass while drawing contact. He finished the play by knocking down the free throw that followed, giving the Wildcats a 62-53 lead with 2:15 remaining.   

New Hampshire outscored Brown 7-3 the rest of the way, knocking down 5-of-8 attempts from the stripe to preserve the victory.

The Wildcats are back in action on Sunday, Dec. 11 when they take on Fairfield (1 p.m.).


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