Saturday's matchup is the 49th meeting between the Wildcats and the Hawks. New Hampshire is looking to snap a 13-game draught against Hartford, the longest stretch without a win against any Wildcat opponent. The last New Hampshire victory against the Hawks came during the 2002-03 season when the Wildcats swept the series. In that season, the Wildcats earned a 56-53 road victory before grabbing a 60-50 home win. The Wildcats earned victories in seven of the first eight meetings with the Hawks.
SCOUTING HARTFORD (11-3, 2-0 AE):
The University of Hartford opened up conference play with a 69-66 victory over UMBC on Jan. 6 ... With the win, the Hawks improved to 11-3 overall and 2-0 in conference play ... Leading the way was senior Diana Delva, who was named the America East Player of the Game, finishing with 17 points and seven rebounds ... Delva was one of four players in double figures with Ilicia Mathis adding 12, while Erica Beverly and Daphne Elliott each added 10 ... The Hawks finished the game shooting 38.9 percent (21-of-54) from the field, including 28.0 percent (7-of-25) from beyond the arc ... For Harford, the win was its fourth straight ... The Hawks have just three losses this season, all to formidable opponents, a list which includes UConn, Providence and Marist ... Hartford is 7-0 at home this season, but has struggled on the road, piecing together a 4-3 record ... Currently the Hawks have given up the fewest points of any team in the conference, with an average of 57.3 points per game this season ... As an offense, Hartford ranks fourth in the America East with an average of 62.6 points per game ... The Hawks rank first in the conference in rebounds, totaling 557 this year ... They also rank first in the America East in blocks with 78, posting 5.6 per game ... Delva leads the Hawks with 15.1 points per game this season, a mark which stands as the fourth-best scoring total in the conference ... Her point total comes with great marksmanship, as she is shooting a conference-best 64.3 percent from the floor ... Delva has been equally active on the boards, ripping down a conference-best 8.6 rebounds per game ... Beverly has added steady production for the Hawks, averaging 9.1 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game.
SCOUTING NEW HAMPSHIRE (5-9, 0-2 AE):
Last time out the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team dropped a 69-57 decision to Stony Brook at the Sports Complex on Wednesday night ... Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) scored a team-high 17 points, while also tallying seven rebounds and a block, earning America East Player of the Game honors for New Hampshire ... Williams leads the team with an impressive 7.1 rebounds per game, which currently ranks seventh in the conference ... She now has 1,055 points and 583 rebounds for her career, totals that rank 12th and ninth, respectively, all-time in program history ... For Stony Brook, Kirsten Jeter was selected as Player of the Game, netting a game-high 21 points and 10 rebounds, along with four steals ... The win improved the Seawolves to 3-11 overall and 1-1 in America East play, while the Wildcats fell to 5-9 overall and 0-2 in conference action ... Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) finished the night with eight points, five rebounds and a steal ... Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) added nine points, five blocks and three boards ... McDonald has now tallied a block in each of the last 10 games ... She currently ranks second in the conference in blocks with 34 this season, which is good for an average of 2.4 per game ... She also has the second-best field goal percentage in the conference with .529 shooting clip ... As a team, the Wildcats currently rank first in conference play in blocks, with 13 (6.5 bpg) in their first two America East matchups ... Overall, the 'Cats have been just as stellar, tallying the second-best block total in the conference with 69 ... New Hampshire is shooting an impressive .381 clip from the floor this season, a mark that currently ranks third in conference ... Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) currently ranks second in the conference in assists, with an average of 5.4 per game this season ... The Wildcats currently have three players averaging in double figure scoring, with Williams leading the way with 12.6 points per game, while Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) and McDonald are averaging 12.2 and 10.9 points per game ... The last time at least three Wildcats ended the season averaging double-figures in scoring was the 2007-08 campaign, when Simpson averaged 11.3 points, Ashley Cerniglia averaged 10.8 points, Williams averaged 10.5 points and Beliveau averaged 10.0 points per game ... In the game prior, the 'Cats fell just short against Vermont, 53-55 on Jan. 2 at Lundholm Gymnasium ... The ‘Cats held the Catamounts to 33.3 percent shooting in the contest, while shooting a .375 clip from the floor ... McDonald was named the America East Player of the Game for UNH, tallying 12 points, nine rebounds, four blocks and two assists ... For Vermont, Courtnay Pilypaitis took home Player of the Game honors, notching a game-high 22 points and 17 rebounds ... Beliveau finished the afternoon with 17 points, six rebounds, two blocks and a steal ... Simpson added two points, seven rebounds and seven assists ... Williams chipped in with seven points and eight rebounds.
TWO OF A KIND
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) is one of just two Wildcats all-time to tally at least 900 points, 250 assists and 100 steals in a career at UNH. For her career, the senior has racked up 943 points, 282 assists and 110 steals. The only other 'Cat to reach such milestones is Martha Morrison, who played for UNH from 1978-82, finishing her career with 914 points, 368 assists and 167 steals.
WILDCAT BLOCK PARTY
The Wildcats currently rank first in the conference in blocks with 13 in their first two America East matchups. Overall, the 'Cats have been just as impressive, tallying the second best block total in the conference with 69, which is good for an average of 4.9 per game. Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) leads the way for the 'Cats this season, notching 34 blocks, while Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) ranks second on the squad with 11.
RE-WRITING THE HISTORY BOOKS
Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) ranks second in the conference in blocks with 34 this season, which is good for an average of 2.4 per game. She has been on an especially hot pace since the start of conference play, with an average of 4.5 blocks per game, a mark that ranks first in the America East. The center has tallied at least four blocks in four of the last five games and has notched a block in each of the last 10 games. Her most impressive outing came against then 23rd-ranked Syracuse Orange on Dec. 30, when she set the UNH single-game record for blocks with seven. In her most recent action, she notched five blocks against Stony Brook, marking the third time this season she has swatted at least five shots. The first time she reached the 5-block plateau came against Louisville on Dec. 22, which also marked the first time a Wildcat tallied at least five blocks in a game since Ray Williams reached the mark against Yale on Nov. 19, 2005. The quick start is nothing new for the junior, as she is picking up right where she left off last season, when she tallied the second best single-season block total in program history with 47. For her career, she ranks fifth all-time in blocks with 90.
Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) has tallied a team-high 17 3-point field goals this season, while shooting the fourth-best field goal percentage (.395) in the conference from beyond the arc. The success from downtown is a pleasant surprise for the guard, who knocked down just seven treys from 3-point range last season paired with a .194 shooting percentage. Wells is averaging 5.4 points, 1.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game this season.
TICKLE THE TWINE
New Hampshire is shooting an impressive .381 clip from the floor this season, a mark that currently ranks third in conference. UNH's stellar marksmanship from the field comes after a season in which the 'Cats shot 35.7 percent from the floor. The last time the Wildcats finished the season with a shooting clip above .380 was during the 2006-07 campaign, when they finished the year with a 38.3 shooting percentage.
New Hampshire currently ranks second in the conference with an average of 37.9 rebounds per game. In their most recent action against Stony Brook, the Wildcats outrebounded the Seawolves 37 to 35. The 'Cats have tallied 40 or more boards in six games this season and have lead in total rebounds seven times.
REED IT AND WEEP
Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) has provided a major punch off the bench for the 'Cats in the last three games, averaging 4.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. Against No. 23 Syracuse on Dec. 30, she achieved career-highs in points (6) and assists (4) in 21 minutes of action. Against Vermont on Jan. 2, the guard scored three points, pulled in a career-high five rebounds and tallied two assists. On the season, the freshman is shooting an impressive 42.9 percent (6-for-14) from beyond the arc, while shooting 33.3 percent (8-for-24) from the floor.
MAKE ROOM AT THE TOP
Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) pulled in seven boards against Stony Brook on Jan. 6, moving her to ninth all-time in career rebounds with 583. The senior leads the team with 7.1 rebounds per game, a total that currently ranks seventh in the conference. Williams has compiled at least seven rebounds in five of the last six games, including an outing against Canisius College on Dec. 28, when she tallied a season-high 11 rebounds.
The Wildcats drained a season-high 10 3-pointers against No. 23 Syracuse University on Dec. 30, making it the first time UNH has achieved the feat since draining 14 trifectas against Colgate on Dec. 5, 2008. Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) led the way knocking down a season-high four trifectas, while Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) and Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) each hit two apiece and Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) and Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) each added a trey to the mix. Wells leads the Wildcats with 15 3-point field goals this season, while shooting a team best 36.6 percent from down town.
Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) notched her first double-double of the season against Canisius College on Dec. 28 with 12 points and 11 rebounds. For Williams, the impressive mark comes as her 14th career double-double. Last season, the forward earned a conference-best 10 double-doubles. As a team, UNH has had three players notch double-doubles this season. Aside from Williams, Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) is the most recent Wildcat to achieve the feat, notching 10 points and a career-high 11 assists against Holy Cross on Dec. 20. Before that, Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) notched her first double-double of the season on Nov. 24 against Harvard with 14 points and 14 rebounds. For the forward, it was her third career double-double as she also notched double digit efforts against Northeastern (22 pts, 10 rbs) on Dec. 15, 2007 and Binghamton (18 pts, 11 rbs) on Jan. 19, 2008.
AGAINST ALL ODDS
With UNH's 42-40 victory over Canisius College on Dec. 28, the Wildcats snapped a seven-game America East Conference losing streak against the Golden Griffins. Earlier this season, Canisius earned a pair of wins against America East opponents, with victories over Binghamton (49-46) and Albany (52-41). For New Hampshire, the win comes as the program's second in its last three meetings against Canisius College.
After rounding out non-conference play against Syracuse on Dec. 30, UNH head coach Kristin Cole is off to her best start during her tenure at New Hampshire, leading the 'Cats to a 5-7 record in non-conference play to kick off the season. The impressive total comes as the most non-conference wins the Wildcats have earned since also tallying five wins during the 2006-07 campaign.
DOING THE DISHES
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) has stepped up in her new role as point guard this season, notching the second-best assist total in the conference with 76 through the first 14 games this year. Against Louisville on Dec. 22, she tallied her second best assist total of the season, dishing out eight assists for the second time this year. In the game prior, she tied a career-high with 11 assists against Holy Cross College on Dec. 20. The last time she reached the 11-assist mark came against UMBC on Feb. 2, 2008. For her career, Simpson has tallied 282 assists, ranking her 11th all-time in program history. To break into the top-10 all-time, Simpson needs just five assists, which at her current pace should be attained in one game. Simpson has been stellar across the board for the ‘Cats this year, averaging 4.9 points, 5.4 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game.
Three Wildcats scored in double-figures for the fourth time this season against Louisville on Dec. 22. Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) and Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) each tallied 18 points, while Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) added 12 points. The last time three Wildcats scored in double-figures was in UNH's 78-65 overtime victory over Harvard on Nov. 24. In that contest, Williams (18), McDonald (17) and Denise Beliveau (14) helped achieve the feat. The trio was at it once again versus UMass as Williams (17), Beliveau (15), and McDonald (10) all scored in double-digits. UNH first accomplished the plateau this season against St. Joseph's, as Beliveau led the way with 21 points, while Williams and Wells tallied 15 and 12 points, respectively, leading the 'Cats to a 64-56 victory at Lundholm Gymnasium.
Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) tallied career-highs in points (18) and rebounds (9) against Louisville on Dec. 22. McDonald reached the 18-point mark in the game prior against Holy Cross, when she helped lead the 'Cats to an 80-72 victory. The success is nothing new for the junior center, as she is off to a stellar start this season, posting 10.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game this year.
Lauren Wells (West Chester, (Pa.) tallied 12 points, one shy of her career high, against the University of Louisville on Dec. 22. In addition, she also compiled a career-high four steals in the contest. For Wells, it was the second time this season she has scored 12 points, as she also reached the mark in a 64-56 win against St. Joseph's on Nov. 13.
TORCHING THE NETS
The Wildcats scored 80 points against Holy Cross on Dec. 20, marking the largest point total posted by New Hampshire since it notched 85 points against UMBC on Jan. 10, 2009. The 80-point output not only comes as a season-high in scoring, but it also marks the first time UNH has shot over 50 percent (54.4; 31-57) from the floor since the ‘Cats did so against Iona on Dec. 12, 2007, when they finished with a .500 percent (30-60) shooting clip.
So far this season the Wildcats have been playing stellar defense against some impressive company. They have held opponents to a conference-best .343 shooting percentage from the floor this year, while shooting an impressive .381 clip themselves. The fresh start comes against an A-10 (St. Joseph's, UMass), an ACC (Maryland) and three Big East (Seton Hall, Louisville, Syracuse) programs, following a season in which opponents shot .404 from the field against the ‘Cats. Most recently against No. 23 Syracuse, the ‘Cats held the Orange to their second lowest offensive output this season, allowing just 58 points and forcing them to shoot just 31.5 percent from the floor. Against Canisius College on Dec. 28, the Wildcats held the Golden Griffins to .267 shooting and just 40 points, marks that are both team-highs. Against Quinnipiac on Nov. 29, New Hampshire held the Bobcats to just 29.5 percent shooting. In the game prior versus Harvard, the Wildcats kicked off the game playing stingy defense against the Crimson, holding them scoreless for the first 5:16 of the action and not allowing a field goal until the 8:44 mark. In UNH's 58-57 win over UMass on Nov. 20, the Wildcats compiled a season-high 13 steals and forced a season-best 27 turnovers. In UNH's matchup against No. 21 Maryland on Nov. 16, the ‘Cats pestered the Terps into shooting just .278 from the field, holding their offense to just 63 points, which was Maryland's second lowest point total in the last 29 games dating back to last season. The only team to hold the Terps to an even lower point total was Louisville, who defeated Maryland 77-60 in the NCAA Elite Eight on March 30, 2009. Against St. Joe's, the ‘Cats were just as impressive, holding the Hawks to just .277 shooting and a total of 56 points.
Five Wildcats finished in double-figure scoring in an 80-72 decision against Holy Cross College on Dec. 22. Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) led all scorers with 20 points and was followed by Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.; 18 points, six rebounds), Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.; 15 points, nine rebounds), Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.; 10 points, 11 assists) and Racheal Fowler (Glassboro, N.J.; 10 points). The last time five Wildcats scored in double-figures was against Colgate on Dec. 5, 2008, when Simpson (24), Abigial LaRosa (Hampton, N.H.) (19), Williams (13), Chrissy Hall (Northbridge, Mass.) (13) and Fowler (10) all scored in double-figures.
SPREADING THE FLOOR
The Wildcats currently have three players averaging in double-figure scoring, with Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) leading the way with 12.6 points per game, while Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.)and Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) are averaging 12.2 and 10.9 points per game. Currently, the 'Cats are one of just four teams in the conference to have three or more players averaging in double-figures. The last time at least three Wildcats ended the season averaging double-figures in scoring was the 2007-08 campaign, when Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) averaged 11.3 points, Ashley Cerniglia averaged 10.8 points, Williams averaged 10.5 points and Beliveau averaged 10.0 points per game.
STEALING THE SHOW
Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) tied her career-high with five steals against Seton Hall on Dec. 3, marking the third time she has reached the mark in her UNH career. It was also the first time a Wildcat compiled five steals in a game since Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) did so on Dec. 5, 2008 against Colgate. On the season, Beliveau has tallied multiple steals in a game eight times for the Wildcats. She currently leads the team with 26 steals, with an average of 1.9 steals per game.
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) knocked down a 3-pointer on Dec. 30 against Syracuse, giving her 174 3-point field goals for her career. The impressive total ranks second all-time in program history, five field goals shy of Heidi Plencner's all-time mark of 179. This season, Simpson has drilled 13 trifectas, averaging 4.8 points per game. Last year, she notched 62 3-pointers, which was the best single-season mark in program history.
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) tallied a steal against Syracuse on Dec. 30, giving her 110 steals for her Wildcat career. The impressive total ranks 22nd all-time in program history. The last Wildcat to break into the 100-steal club was Whitney Edwards, who played for the 'Cats from 2003-07 and compiled 229 for her career, which ranks second all-time in program history. On the season, Simpson ranks second on team with 17 steals, averaging 1.2 per game.
RIGHT ON POINT
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) scored six points last time out against Stony Brook, giving her 69 on the young the season. She now has 943 points for her career, which ranks 15th all-time in program history. Her two best offensive outbursts came against No. 21 Maryland and Holy Cross, when she tallied a season-high 11 and 10 points, respectively. The point guard came up in the clutch for the Wildcats against Harvard as she drained the first of two free throws to send the game into overtime tied at 58-58. Simpson led the charge in the overtime period as the Wildcats outscored the Crimson 20-7 to earn the 78-65 victory. Last season she notched a career-high 357 points, averaging 11.5 points per game. In the season prior, she finished with 315 points, with an average of 11.3 points per game.
WELCOME TO THE CLUB
After tallying 18 points and pulling down five rebounds against Louisville on Dec. 22, Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) became just the eleventh Wildcat to score over 1,000 points and compile 500 rebounds in program history. For her career she has compiled 1,055 points and 583 rebounds. The last 'Cat to achieve the feat was Danielle Clark in 2007, who finished her UNH career with 1,331 points and 579 rebounds. Kris Kinney tops the list, finishing her UNH career with 2,231 points and 897 rebounds after a four-year stint with the 'Cats from 1985-89.
Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) netted 17 points against Stony Brook on Jan. 6, making it the 16th time in the last 20 games dating back to last year she has scored in double-figures. Against Louisville on Dec. 22, she notched a season-high 18 points for the third time this year. Her two other 18-point outings came in back-to-back efforts against Quinnipiac (Nov. 29) and Harvard (Nov. 24). During the 20 game span, she has tallied 22 points on two occasions, the latest coming in a 66-62 win over Albany at the SEFCU Arena on Feb. 28, 2009. Her other 22-point outburst came against defending conference champion Vermont on Feb. 22, 2009. Last year she posted double-figures in all 23 games to start the season, including back-to-back 25-plus point games. She had a career-high 27-point performance at Boston University (Jan. 17, 2009), then posted 26 at Stony Brook (Jan. 21, 2009). In 1998-99, Orsi Farkas posted double figures in all 31 games for the Wildcats.
IN THE CLUTCH
With UNH's 78-65 overtime victory over Harvard University on Nov. 24, the Wildcats have now won their last six decisions in overtime dating back to March 1, 2003, when UNH defeated Stony Brook 70-67 in the extra frame. Tuesday's win marks the largest margin of victory in overtime in program history. It is also UNH's first win against Harvard since Dec. 29, 1999, when the Wildcats defeated the Crimson 70-58 at Lundholm Gymnasium.
UNH's 58-57 win over UMass on Nov. 20 marked the first time the Wildcats knocked off two Atlantic-10 teams in the same season since the 1989-90 campaign. The 'Cats earned their first victory over an Atlantic-10 opponent this season on Nov. 13, when they defeated St. Joseph's University 64-56 at Lundholm Gymnasium. During the 1989-90 season, the Wildcats defeated Rhode Island 67-56 on Nov. 28 and earned a 66-60 win against UMass on Dec. 9 to complete the A-10 sweep in non-conference play.
In addition to her 21 points and nine rebounds in UNH's 64-56 win over St. Joseph's University on Nov. 13, Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) tied her career high in free throws made, knocking down 10-of-10 shots from the charity stripe. Included in that total are four tallies which came in the last two minutes of play to seal the victory for the 'Cats. It was the first time a Wildcat shot 100 percent from the foul line since Danielle Clark (12-12) did so on Nov. 26, 2006 against Iona. The last time Beliveau knocked down 10 free throws in a game came against Northeastern on Dec. 15, 2007. She finished that night with 22 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals.
LAST TIME OUT
Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) dropped in a team-high 17 points, but the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team fell to Stony Brook University, 69-57, at the Stony Brook Sports Complex Wednesday night.
The win improves the Seawolves to 3-11 overall and 1-1 in America East play. While the Wildcats fall to 5-9 overall and 0-2 in conference action.
Williams, who in addition to scoring 17 points, also pulled in seven rebounds and notched one block, was selected as the America East Player of the Game for New Hampshire. For Stony Brook, Kirsten Jeter took home Player of the Game honors, netting a game-high 21 points and 10 rebounds, along with four steals.
After starting the game with a 4-2 lead following a Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) free throw, the Seawolves posted a 7-0 run to jump ahead 9-4 with 14:50 remaining in the first half.
Diamon Beckford (Philadelphia, Pa.) would disrupt SBU's pace with a 3-pointer at 14:24, cutting the deficit down to two points, with score set at 9-7 in favor of the home team. Kirsten Jeter would strike back with a layup and a pair of free throws that pushed the score to 13-7 at 13:02.
New Hampshire would fire back with a layup by Beckford and a jumper by Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn), to once again slice the deficit down to just two points, setting the score at 13-11, with 10:47 remaining.
Moments later, Destiny Jacobs would get the Seawolves back in the action, as she layed the ball in to set off a string of eight unanswered points, giving the home team its largest lead to that point, pushing ahead 21-11 at 9:20.
The ‘Cats would bite back with a 10-0 scoring stretch that lasted nearly three minutes, as Racheal Fowler (Glassboro, N.J) polished things off with a jumper in the paint, knotting the score even at 21-21.
For the next 3:30 both teams would exchange baskets, until Stony Brook caught fire late in the stanza when Jeter nailed a pair of free throws, kicking off a 9-0 run to close out the half. Misha Horsey iced the run, knocking down a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer, giving the home team the 37-29 advantage at the intermission.
Stony Brook would be the first to get things started in the second frame, as Crystal Rushin dropped in a layup to push SBU's lead up to 10 once again, with a 39-29 advantage at 19:19.
It wouldn't take long for the ‘Cats to get back on track, as McDonald, Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) and Williams all buried layups on ensuing possessions, cutting the lead down to four with 17:33 to play.
Sam Landers and Horsey would strike back with jumpers on back-to-back possessions, helping SBU build its lead to eight, with the score 43-35. However, Williams would help give the ‘Cats a lift, laying in the ball off the glass and lacing two free throws, to narrow the gap to just six points.
Despite the quick offensive spurt by New Hampshire, it wasn't enough to trip up the Seawolves, who came back with a pair of 3-pointers on consecutive trips up the floor. Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) added a free throw and McDonald buried a layup in the midst the action, but SBU would cap off the 1:08 stretch with a jumper by Horsey, giving the Seawolves their largest lead of the night, with the score 54-42 at 12:32.
Moments later, Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) would ignite the ‘Cats drilling a trifecta, setting off a 9-4 UNH run that cut the score to 58-51 with 3:36 remaining. However, for New Hampshire, the run was too little too late, as Stony Brook scored 11 of the game's last 17 points, to hold onto the victory.
Wells finished the night with eight points, five rebounds and a steal. McDonald added nine points, five blocks and three boards.
For Stony Brook, Horsey was the team's second leading scorer, notching 16 points, five assists and two steals. Tamiel Murray chipped in with nine points, five rebounds and five steals.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) a senior guard on the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team, was honored as Player of the Week by the America East Conference on Dec. 21.
Simpson recorded 10 points and a career-high 11 assists to propel the Wildcats to an 80-72 victory Sunday afternoon against Holy Cross at Lundholm Gymnasium. Simpson also recorded two steals, two blocks, two rebounds and was one of five Wildcats in double digit scoring in the contest.
After trailing 37-33 at the half, Simpson ignited the ‘Cats with 15:37 remaining, sparking a 10-0 run by setting up Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) with a layup and scoring a basket of her own on ensuing possessions in a span of 2:37 to take a 49-39 lead. She then helped UNH build its largest lead of the game with a steal and a long outlet pass to Racheal Fowler (Glassboro, N.J.) for a layup, capped off with a 3-pointer by Simpson on the next possession to push the score to 71-56 in favor of the home team.
Scoring all of her 10 points in the second frame, Simpson helped the Wildcats outscore the Crusaders 47 to 35 in the stanza, as the team posted an impressive .615 percent shooting clip from the floor. Not to mention, the 80-point output by the ‘Cats is the largest point total posted by New Hampshire since it notched 85 points against UMBC on Jan. 10, 2009.
WILDCATS PICKED FOURTH IN PRESEASON POLL
The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team received 38 points to place fourth in the America East preseason poll that was released this afternoon by the conference.
The Wildcats finished last season in fifth place in the conference with an 8-23 record, including a 6-10 mark against America East opponents, after being picked seventh in last year's preseason poll. New Hampshire's 38-point total tied with Boston University, who is coming off an undefeated conference regular season and its first appearance in the postseason WNIT. UMBC finished followed closely behind UNH and BU, with 35 points in the sixth place spot.
Vermont, last year's conference champion, is predicted to once again capture the title, receiving five first place votes and tallying 61 points. Hartford is selected to finish second with 60 points, garnering four first place votes in the poll. Binghamton is predicted to finish third, with 45 points.
Stony Brook University is slated to finish seventh (23 points), while the University of Maine (13) and the University at Albany (11 points) round out the final three spots in the poll.
WOMEN'S HOOP RETURNS HOME TO TAKE ON HARTFORD (JAN. 9)