DURHAM, N.H. – Senior Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Va.) scored 12 points to go along with seven rebounds and three assists, but the University of New Hampshire men's basketball team dropped a 56-54 decision to Stony Brook in Saturday's America East contest at Lundholm Gymnasium.
New Hampshire fell to 6-15 overall and 2-7 in conference action, while Stony Brook improved to 17-5 on the season and 8-1 in league play.
Rhoads was named the America East Player of the Game, while fellow senior Ferg Myrick (Philadelphia, Pa.) added 10 points, four assists, two blocks and two steals.
Dave Coley led Stony Brook with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Anthony Jackson and Jameel Warney added 11 points apiece.
New Hampshire shot 33.9 percent (19-56) from the floor and outrebounded the Seawolves, 36-35. Stony Brook shot 39.9 percent (19-48) from the field.
Stony Brook opened the contest with a 7-2 run before Myrick slashed to the basket for a layup and drew the foul to set up the eventual three-point play. Rhoads followed with a jumper a little over a minute later to even the score at 7-7.
After the teams swapped baskets, Anthony Mayo pushed SBU on top with a jumper, but Rhoads and junior Patrick Konan (Gainesville, Fla.) answered with back-to-back 3-pointers for the 15-13 lead at 8:49. Jackson broke up the stretch with a free throw, before the Wildcats tallied ten unanswered points as juniors Scott Morris (Walkersville, Md.) and Jordon Bronner (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) capped off the run with consecutive treys to push the home side on top, 25-14, at 5:04.
Nevertheless, the Seawolves used an 11-2 run over the final five minutes of the first half to pull within two, 27-25, at halftime.
Stony Brook kicked off the second half with a 10-2 run for the 35-29 lead just three minutes into the stanza. UNH responded with an 8-1 stretch, highlighted by three-point play from senior Chris Matagrano (Sayreville, N.J.), to even the score at 37-37 with 13:44 left to play.
From there, the Seawolves scored eight straight points until Matagrano stopped the bleeding with a 3-pointer from the corner to pull the Wildcats within five, 45-40, midway through the half.
After Coley drove for a layup, Myrick knocked down a trey on the other end to trim the deficit to four, 47-43, but Coley hit a pair of free throws to bring the SBU lead back to six, 49-43.
After UNH pulled within two on a Matagrano layup and a pair of free throws from Konan, SBU hit three straight foul shots for the five-point lead, but Rhoads drove hard to the rim and rolled in a layup to pull the Wildcats within three, 52-49, at 3:43.
UNH edged the Seawolves at the free throw line, 3-1, over the next two minutes to pull within one, but Jackson drilled a tough 3-pointer to push the visitors in front, 56-52, with 1:16 remaining. Myrick was able to draw a foul on the next play and hit both free throws for the one-point deficit, but Warney snagged the offensive rebound on Jackson's 3-pointer with seven seconds remaining as the Seawolves ran out the clock to seal the win.
The Wildcats return to action on Wednesday, Feb. 6 when they visit Vermont at 7 p.m.