DURHAM, N.H. – The University of New Hampshire men's basketball team takes on Stony Brook University in search of its first conference win on Saturday, Jan. 5 at Pritchard Gymnasium (2 p.m.). Links to live audio and live video, as well as live stats, will be available at www.unhwildcats.com.
UNH (4-9, 0-1 AE)
At Stony Brook (9-4, 0-0 AE)
Saturday, Jan. 5 | 2 p.m. | Pritchard Gymnasium | Stony Brook, N.Y.
THE MATCHUP | The Wildcats and Seawolves meet for the 24th time in their relatively young conference rivalry, with UNH leading the all-time series, 14-10. The Wildcats have won 10 of the last 15 meetings, including six of the last 10 against the Seawolves. UNH has swept the season series three times in six seasons. The Wildcats have been victorious in three of the last six games on the road against the Seawolves, and has won eight of the last 11 at Lundholm Gymnasium. Stony Brook swept the season series last year. In the most recent meeting on Feb. 6, 2012, Ferg Myrick scored 14 of the University of New Hampshire's 28 second-half points, but the Wildcats fell, 57-48, at Lundholm Gymnasium. After being held to one first-half point, Myrick went 6-for-9 in the second half, including 2-of-4 from 3-point land, to score 15 points. He also added four rebounds.
SCOUTING THE SEAWOLVES | Stony Brook enters Saturday's contest at 9-4 overall after a 50-44 victory over Manhattan on Wednesday to close out non-conference action, marking the program's best 13-game start and best regular season non-conference win total in its Div. I history. The SBU defense forced 17 Manhattan turnovers while holding the Jaspers to 34% shooting from the field. Jameel Warney, Anthony Mayo and Scott King each posted eight points. Stony Brook is now 7-0 this season and 23-1 since the start of the 2011-12 season when holding teams under 60 points. Anthony Jackson leads the team in scoring with 12.4 points per game, while Dave Coley (11.5) and Warney (11.5) also average double figures. Tommy Brenton paces the team in rebounds (8.0), assists (4.8) and steals (1.9). SBU leads the conference in scoring defense (59.8), free throw percentage (74.0), field goal percentage defense (38.3, 276-720), rebounding offense (38.8), blocks (4.5), offensive rebounds (12.4) and defensive rebounds (26.5).
COMMON DENOMINATOR | UNH and Stony Brook have one common opponent this season as both teams lost at Connecticut in non-conference action. UNH fell to the Huskies, 61-53, while SBU lost, 73-62.
PERIMETER DEFENSE | New Hampshire currently leads the America East in 3-point field percentage defense, limiting opponents to 24.4 percent (60-246) shooting from beyond the arc.
LEND A HELPING HAND | Chandler Rhoads dished out a career-high nine assists in the loss at Colgate, marking his second 7-plus assist game of the season (CCSU, Dec. 5). Rhoads ranks fourth in the conference with 4.1 assists per game.
FOUR SCORE | UNH is the only America East team with four players averaging double figures. Ferg Myrick is leading the way with 16.0 points per game and is joined by Chris Pelcher (11.2), Chandler Rhoads (11.0) and Patrick Konan (10.8) in double figures.
PHILLY'S FINEST | Ferg Myrick notched a game-high 19 points in the team's loss against Vermont on Wednesday. In the game prior, he posted 23 points at Colgate as he shot 8-of-19 from the floor and knocked down a career-high five 3-pointers. He leads the team in scoring with 16.0 points per game. Myrick has reached double digits in all but two games this season and has posted at least 20 points in four contests.
HOME COOKING | The Wildcats are 3-2 at home this season and have been better across the board when at Lundholm Gymnasium, averaging 70.6 points per game and shooting 47.0 percent from the field and 36.9 percent from downtown. On the road, the Wildcats are averaging 59.1 points per game, shooting 35.6 percent from the floor and 28.4 percent from 3-point territory.
STEALING THE SHOW | Chandler Rhoads snagged a career-high six steals in the win over Yale and currently ranks third in the league with 1.9 steals per contest. Rhoads needs just 11 more steals to reach 100 in his career.
BIG ADDITION | Chris Pelcher has been a force down low for the Wildcats this season as he ranks second in the conference in field goal percentage (56.1, 60-107) and blocks (1.7). He also ranks fifth in rebounding (7.4). The junior transfer recorded 16 points and a game-high 12 rebounds against UConn (11/29) for his second double-double of the season.
PAINT IT BLACK | UNH is 4-0 when it finds a way to score inside this season by winning the battle down low, but 0-8 when they are outscored in the paint. Additionally, the Wildcats are 0-8 when the opponent scores first.
ON THE OFFENSIVE | New Hampshire scored 84 points in the loss against CCSU, marking the team's highest scoring output since the season-opening win over Suffolk (91-51). The Wildcats set season-highs in field goal percentage (57.1, 28-49), 3-point field goal percentage (48.0, 12-25), 3-pointers made (12) and assists (19). All 10 starters reached double-figures, while the Wildcats had five players hit double-digits for the first time since the season-opener.
ALL-AROUND GAME | Chandler Rhoads posted a strong overall performance against CCSU, leading the team in scoring with 18 points on 8-of-10 shooting from the floor. He also added a career-high seven assists to pair with three steals.
LEGEND KILLER | Ferg Myrick came up big against mighty UConn, registering a game- and season-high 20 points to pair with seven boards. Myrick is averaging 19.5 points per game against the Huskies after a 19-point performance as a sophomore during the 2010-11 season.
RHOADS SCHOLAR || Chandler Rhoads poured in a career-best 21 points in the team's loss at NJIT. Rhoads, who was 8-of-15 from the floor in 39 minutes of action, scored 14 points in the second half including a string of seven-straight for the Wildcats.
PELCHER'S CAREER DAY || Chris Pelcher put up some impressive numbers against NJIT as he posted career-highs of 17 points and 11 rebounds for his first career double-double. He shot 7-of-14 from the floor and was perfect at the charity stripe (3-3). He also registered a career-high four blocks.
KONAN THE BARBARIAN || Patrick Konan scored 11 points in the opening half against NJIT to help give the Wildcats a 35-29 lead at halftime. Konan hit three of his four 3-pointers in the first half and finished with 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the floor before leaving the game due to injury.
DOUBLE-DOUBLE TAKE || Ferg Myrick and Patrick Konan both posted double-doubles at Dartmouth (Nov. 13). Myrick recorded a game-high 19 points and a career-high 11 rebounds for his first career double-double, while Konan had 14 points and 11 boards for the third of his career. It was the first time two Wildcats notched double-doubles in the same game since Feb. 12, 2012 when Brian Benson (16 pts, 12 rbs) and Konan (15 pts, 11 rbs) accomplished the feat in a loss at UMBC last season.
TAKE THEM TO SCHOOL || UNH downed its intrastate rival Dartmouth, 72-58, to mark the team's fifth-straight win over the Big Green. Dartmouth still leads the all-time series, 31-30, but the Wildcats have won seven of the last eight meetings and 11 of the last 14.
FIVE GUYS || New Hampshire had five players reach double-figures in the season-opening win over Suffolk. Patrick Konan led the way with a game-high 16 points, followed by Chris Pelcher (14), Ferg Myrick (14), Scott Morris (13) and Chris Matagrano (10). The trio of Myrick, Morris and Matagrano came off the bench to reach the double-figure mark. It was the first time UNH had five players score double-digits in the same contest since Jan. 1, 2012, when the Wildcats fell to UMBC at home in the conference opener.
IMPRESSIVE DEBUT || Chris Pelcher netted then-career highs of 14 points and nine rebounds against Suffolk in his UNH debut. Most impressively, he was highly efficient in the process as he went 7-of-8 from the field (.875) and added three assists. Pelcher played his first two seasons at Iona and sat out the entire 2011-12 season due to NCAA transfer regulations.
CRASHING THE BOARDS || New Hampshire pulled down 51 rebounds against Suffolk, marking the most in a single game since Jan. 15, 2011 when the Wildcats grabbed 54 rebounds in a double-overtime loss at Stony Brook. Chris Pelcher and Ferg Myrick led the way this time around with nine boards apiece, while 11 of 13 Wildcats snagged multiple rebounds.
TREY-MENDOUS STREAK FOR 'CATS || UNH has recorded at least one 3-pointer in 625 consecutive games, a streak that spans 21 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. UNLV holds the NCAA Division I record for most consecutive games scoring a 3-point goal. Since the 3-point field goal was adopted by the NCAA in 1986-87, UNLV has converted at least one 3-pointer in all 840 games played.
HERRION CHASING HISTORY || Head coach Bill Herrion, who enters his eighth year at UNH and 22nd in America East, is the league all-time leader in championship wins (21) and ranks second in conference victories (150). Herrion is just two victories behind former Boston U. coach Dennis Wolff for the most in conference history.
DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE || The Wildcats ranked in the 80th percentile nationally in scoring defense last season, holding opponents to just 62.8 points per game, which ranked third in America East. Additionally, UNH was the best on the conference defending the 3-pointer last season as it held foes to 29.7 percent from beyond the arc, which ranked 13th nationally. Lastly, senior Chandler Rhoads earned America East Al-Defensive honors for the second straight year.
SIGNING DAY || UNH recently announced that two student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent to attend UNH and play for the Wildcat basketball program next fall.
John Edwards, a 6-foot-6-inch forward from Charlotte, N.C., joins the Wildcats after playing at Brewster Academy, one of the top prep schools in the country. He averaged 5.0 points per game on a squad that went 33-1 overall en route to the National Prep Championship.
Daniel Jackson, a 6-foot, 170-pound point guard from Cedar Park, Texas, comes to UNH after playing the last three years at Vista Ridge High School. Jackson led the squad with 15.0 points per game and topped the district with 7.0 assists per contest as a junior last season. He was named first-team all-district for his efforts and also earned all-district academic honors.
OH CAPTAIN, MY CAPTAIN || Seniors Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Va.), Ferg Myrick (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Chris Matagrano (Sayreville, N.J.) have been named captains for the upcoming 2012-13 season.
Rhoads, who also served as a captain last season, returns as one of the premier defenders in the conference after he was named to the America East All-Defensive Team for the second time in as many seasons. Rhoads also proved to be a key component on the offensive end, logging 11.2 points per game and 2.7 assists per games as a junior. Rhoads started every game for the Wildcats last season and ranked first in the league in minutes played (36.6).
Myrick enjoyed a productive junior campaign after he missed most of his sophomore season due to injury. The forward averaged 8.5 points per game and ranked second on the team with 15 blocks during the 2011-12 season. A consistent offensive player, Myrick scored double-digit points 12 times on the season, highlighted by a 19-point outburst in a victory against Towson. Myrick was named to the America East All-Rookie team as a freshman in 2009-10 after averaging 7.6 points per game.
Matagrano appeared in 26 games off the bench for the 'Cats in 2011-12, averaging 11.7 minutes per contest and 2.2 rebounds per game. Matagrano, who ranked third on the team with a .469 shooting percentage, had his best game against Holy Cross (Dec. 3) when he notched career highs in points (11) and rebounds (7).
PRESEASON COACHES' POLL || New Hampshire (34 points) was picked to finish sixth in the America East Preseason Coaches' Poll. The Wildcats were tabbed to finish behind the University of Vermont (60), Stony Brook University (58), Boston University (49), Albany (38), and the University of Maine (35). The Catamounts were predicted to win the league and received five out of eight first-place votes. Stony Brook, last year's runner-up and regular-season champion, collected the remaining four first-place votes. The University of Hartford (26) was selected seventh, followed by UMBC (15) and Binghamton (9) to round out the field.
TRAINING DAY || The Wildcats welcome three freshmen to the roster this season. Frank Okeke (DeSoto, Texas) joins the Wildcats after leading his team to a 5A Regional II District Championship. Okeke played for the Deron Williams Elite AAU program and was named to the First-Team All-District and First-Team All-Academic as a senior.
Chris Orozco (Tenafly, N.J.) was named First-Team All-League in three straight seasons prior to coming to UNH. He was also named to the First-Team All-County squad for his last two seasons at Tenafly High School.
Logan Mortenson (South Jordon, Utah) averaged 15.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game over his four year career Juan Diego Catholic High School in Draper, Utah. He averaged 14.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game as a senior and was named a McDonald's All-American Nominee and an All-State Second-Team selection. Most recently, he posted 12.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game last year at St. John's Northwestern Military Academy.
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.
WILDCATS STREAMING LIVE || UNH and Pack Network have once again partnered to provide online video streaming of UNH athletics for the upcoming 2012-13 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 || Wildcat Sports Properties (WSP), a property of Learfield Sports, is pleased to announce that Jim Jeannotte and Mike Murphy will once again serve as the broadcast duo for the 2012-13 UNH men's and women's basketball seasons on the Wildcat Sports Radio Network. Veteran play-by-play man Jeannotte will return for his 31st year broadcasting UNH men's basketball, while color analyst Murphy enters his 12 season calling Wildcat men's hoops.
The Wildcat Sports Radio Network consists of flagship stations WGIR (610-AM) in Manchester, which has been headquarters for UNH play-by-play since 2008, The Wave (WQSO 96.7-FM) in Portsmouth and the Sports Animal (WPKX 930-AM) in Rochester. Affiliates include WNTK (99.7 FM) in New London and WSMN (1590-AM) in Nashua, plus all broadcasts are streamed live and archived via Stretch Internet at www.unhwildcats.com. All game broadcasts begin 30 minutes prior to tipoff.