DURHAM, N.H. – Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) tallied a season-high 15 points and a career-high 13 rebounds, leading the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team to a 65-52 victory over Dartmouth College Tuesday night at Lundholm Gymnasium.
McDonald was named the America East Player of the Game for New Hampshire, earning her third double-double of her career, finishing the night on 7-of-11 shooting. She rounded out the contest with a pair of blocks, moving up to third all-time on UNH's career block list with 116.
The Wildcats opened up things up scoring the first two baskets of the game with Kate Early (Corning, N.Y.) and Sarah-Marie Frankenberger (Gross Gerau, Germany) each dropping in a layup to jump ahead 4-0 in the opening moments of the contest.
Faziah Steen snapped the scoreless streak for Dartmouth with a jumper at 18:06, but UNH responded piling on the points, as four Wildcats scored over a span of five minutes, posting a 14-8 lead on the Big Green with 13:45 remaining in the first frame.
Dartmouth was able to cut the score down to two points in the next minute, but New Hampshire built its lead up to 11 points, posting a 15-6 run, with Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) notching a pair of jumpers to cap off the streak, putting the 'Cats up 29-18 with 5:38 remaining in the first half.
The Big Green came back with a 6-2 run, cutting the score to 31-24 in favor of the home team, but the 'Cats were able to close out the first frame with a 6-3 run, as McDonald put the team on her back burying a pair of jumpers to give New Hampshire a 37-27 lead at the break.
The two squads would trade blows in the early going of the second stanza, but the Wildcats picked up the pace midway through the half, firing off a 10-2 run, capped with a 3-pointer by Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) that gave the home team its biggest lead of the night with a 59-40 advantage with 9:06 remaining.
Dartmouth responded stringing off seven unanswered points over 3:18, but it was too late for the Big Green, as New Hampshire was able to hold onto the victory in the closing moments of the contest.
Hogan finished the night with 15 points, a career-high seven assists, and four boards. Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) chipped in with eight points, six rebounds and three assists. Steen led the visitors with a game-high 17 points, two assists and two steals.
The Wildcats return to action on Saturday, Nov. 20 (4 p.m.) when they take on Brown University at Lundholm Gymnasium.