January 4, 2011

Women's Basketball Opens Conference Slate Against Albany (Jan. 4)

GAME NOTES (PDF)

 

THE MATCHUP

New Hampshire will take on the University at Albany on Tuesday marking the 33rd meeting between the two squads. Last season the Wildcats split the season series, earning an 87-77 win at SEFCU Arena, but finished out the season with a 64-62 overtime loss at Lundholm Gymnasium. In the year prior, the 'Cats swept the season series against the Great Danes. Before the 2009-10 campaign, the Great Danes had won three of the previous four meetings against the 'Cats, including a season sweep in the 2007-08 series.

SCOUTING ALBANY (7-6, 0-0 AE):

Last time out the University at Albany fell to Fordham University, 48-43, in its final non-conference game of the season at SEFCU Arena on Jan. 2 ... Ebone Henry led the Great Danes with 11 points and seven boards ... Felicia Johnson added 10 points and five rebounds ... Julie Forster chipped in with eight points, 15 boards, and four steals ... The loss is the program's third in a row, and its fifth in the last six games ... Albany's lone win on the stretch came in a 63-47 decision against Niagara on the road ... The Great Danes tipped off the season with five straight wins, including six of its first seven games ... Albany is 2-2 at home and 5-4 on the road this season ... Henry leads the team with an average of 12.3 points per game, ranking seventh in the conference ... She is also averaging 7.1 boards per game ... Forster leads the team with 11.2  rebounds per game, ranking first in the conference ... She is also averaging 9.3 points per game ...  She ranks third in the conference in field goal percentage with a .480 shooting clip (48-100) ... She also ranks fourth in the conference in blocked shots with an average of 1.2 per game ... Johnson ranks second on the team in scoring with an average of 11.5 points per game, ranking ninth in the America East ... The Great Danes rank first in the conference in scoring defense, giving up just 57.5 points per game ... Albany is averaging 37.6 boards per game, a total that ranks third in the America East.

IN THE CLUTCH

The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team earned an 88-74 win over Rhode Island (Jan. 1), in the first triple-overtime game in program history. The game, which was the team's first overtime contest this season, was also its first win in extended play since defeating Harvard, 78-65, at Lundholm Gymnasium on Nov. 24, 2009.

SNIPER

Sophomore guard Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) notched a career-high 21 points on 8-of-22 shooting from the floor, including 5-of-10 shooting from deep against Rhode Island (Jan. 1). Her five 3-pointers were also a career best, as she became the first Wildcat to tally five trifectas in a game since Amy Simpson did so against Dartmouth on Jan. 13, 2008.

DOUBLE-DOUBLE TROUBLE

Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.; 25 pts, 10 rbs) and Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.; 22 pts, 12 rbs) both registered double-doubles against Rhode Island (Jan. 1). With their impressive outings, they became the first pair of 'Cats to notch double-doubles in the same game since Abigail LaRosa (Hampton, N.H.; 17 pts, 10 rbs) and Candace Williams (19 pts, 11 rbs) did so against UMBC on Feb. 8, 2009.

HOT STREAK

Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) registered her second straight double-double, establishing a career high with 22 points and snaring 12 boards against Rhode Island (Jan. 1). She reached her impressive point total on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc, a total that was also a career best. The mark comes as her third double-double of the season and the fifth of her career. It was also the third straight game she has tallied double-digit points. Over the course of the last three games she is averaging 17.3 points, 9.0 rebounds, 3.0 blocks and 1.7 assists per game. 

FOUR OF A KIND

Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.; 25), Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.; 22), Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.; 21), and Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.; 10) all scored in double-digits against Rhode Island (Jan. 1), marking the first time four Wildcats scored in double-figures since Feb. 21, 2010 against Albany. In that outing, McDonald (16), Beliveau (15), Reed (11), and Candace Williams (11) all registered double-digit points.

KNOCKING THE BOTTOM OUT

Junior forward Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) had a stellar outing against Rhode Island (Jan. 1), notching her third double-double of the season, scoring a career-high 25 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. She reached the mark on 6-of-11 shooting from the field, including 3-of-7 shooting from deep. She also knocked down a career-best 10-of-14 shots from the charity stripe, marking the third time she has reached that milestone in her career. Additionally, she becomes the first 'Cat to tally 25-plus points in a game since Candace Williams (26) did so against Stony Brook on Jan. 24, 2009.

GET THAT OUTTA HERE

Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) notched a season-high five blocks against Rhode Island (Jan. 1). She has registered multiple blocks in four straight games, including six of the last seven. She has registered multiple blocks six times this year and leads New Hampshire with 19 swats on the season.

SUPERSIZED EFFORT

Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) earned All-Tournament Team honors after a stellar performance at the 20th Annual Hawk Classic (Dec. 28-29). In the two-game stretch she averaged an impressive 15.0 points, 7.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 2.0 blocks per game. She kicked off the tournament tying her career-high with 19 points, while also registering four boards, two assists, two blocks and two steals against St. Joseph's University. She capped off the tournament with 11 points, 11 rebounds, two assists and two blocks against Quinnipiac University.

DIME DROPPER

Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) tallied a career-best eight assists against St. Joseph's University on Dec. 28 in the first round of the 20th Annual Hawk Classic. She is the first Wildcat to reach this impressive mark since Amy Simpson did so last season against Maine on Feb. 16. She reached her previous career high of seven assists twice this season.

BREAKOUT

Sarah-Marie Frankenberger (Gross Gerau, Germany) tallied a season-best 11 points against Quinnipiac University in the second round of the 20th Annual Hawk Classic on Dec. 29. She reached the mark on 3-of-5 shooting from the field and 2-of-2 shooting from beyond the arc. It was the second time she has notched double-digit points this season, with her other double-figure outing coming against Brown on Nov. 20 when she finished with 10 points.

COUNT IT

Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) ranks seventh in the America East in field goal percentage, shooting 44.9 (44-98) percent from the floor this season. Over the course of the last three games she is shooting an impressive 46.2 percent (18-39) from the floor, including a perfect 100 percent (3-3) from beyond the arc.

DOING WELLS

Making her first start of the season, Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) made the most of the opportunity, notching a career-high 18 points against Quinnipiac (Dec. 22). Her impressive outing came on 7-of-14 shooting from the floor, including 4-of-7 from deep. Her four 3-point field goals were also a career best. She tied her previous career high of 13 points this season against Harvard on Dec. 10, a mark she has reached twice in her career.

THREE PARTY

New Hampshire hit a season-best 50 percent from beyond the arc against Quinnipiac University on Dec. 22, reaching the mark hitting 12 three-point field goals on 24 tries. The 'Cats surpassed their season high with 13 three-point field goals on 28 attempts (.464) against Rhode Island (Jan. 1). The impressive total was just one short of the program record, as Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.; 5), Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.; 3), Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.; 3), and Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.; 2) all tallied multiple threes in the contest.

TRIPLE TROUBLE

Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.; 3rd), Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.; 5th), and Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.; 6th) all rank in the top-10 in three-point field goal percentage in the America East. Hogan leads the way with a .408 (20-49) shooting clip from beyond the arc, ranking third in the conference, while Beliveau (.396; 19-48) and Reed (.392; 20-51) rank fifth and sixth, respectively.

JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES

Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) currently ranks in the top-10 in scoring (5th), rebounding (8th), free throw percentage (3rd), and three-point field-goal percentage (5th) in the America East. The junior forward is averaging 13.0 points and 7.1 rebounds per game, while shooting an impressive 80.0 (44-55) percent from the charity stripe and 39.6 (19-48) percent from beyond the arc.

DOUBLING UP

Junior forward Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) registered 19 points and pulled in 12 rebounds, earning her second double-double of the season against Quinnipiac (Dec. 22). Her first double-double came against Holy Cross (Nov. 23) when she tallied 16 points and 13 rebounds against the Crusaders. She has notched seven double-doubles in her career.

THREE'S COMPANY

Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.; 19), Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.; 18) and Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.; 14) all scored in double-figures against Quinnipiac (Dec. 22); marking the second straight game three Wildcats have reached this milestone. In the previous outing, Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.; 11), Beliveau (10) and Reed (10) scored in double-digits against CCSU (Dec. 19), marking the first time the 'Cats have achieved this feat on the season. It is also the first time three-plus Wildcats have scored in double-figures in back-to-back games this year.

BENCHMARK

The Wildcats scored a combined 42 points off the bench in back-to-back efforts against Harvard (Dec. 10) and CCSU (Dec. 19). The stretch marked the best two-game stretch the reserves have had this season. In that span, the 'Cats tallied a season-best 26 points against the Crimson and 16 points against the Blue Devils.

MAKING IT COUNT

UNH ranks first in the America East in field goal percentage (.394) and three-point field goal percentage (.377) this season. The 'Cats have knocked down 253-of-642 from the floor and have netted 87-of-231 attempts from beyond the arc.

RAZZLE DAZZLE

After coming off the bench much of last season, sophomore guard Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) has stepped up in a big way for UNH this year. Starting in 10 of 12 games, Reed ranks second on the team in scoring (10.1 ppg) and ranks first among guards in rebounds (3.6 rpg). She has scored in double-digits nine times in her career, including seven times this season.

DOUBLE-DIGIT DANDY

Junior forward Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) has scored in double-figures in eight of her last nine games, with her most recent double-digit outing coming against Rhode Island (Jan. 1) when she tallied a career-best 25 points. During the streak she notched her previous season high of 19 points against Quinnipiac (Dec. 22), while also registering 16 points against Holy Cross (Nov. 23) and Harvard (Dec. 10).

BLOCK PARTY

Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) and junior center Kelley Flynn (Hopkinton, N.H.) rank second and sixth in the America East in blocked shots with 19 and 11 swats, respectively. As a team, UNH ranks first in the conference in swats, averaging 3.8 per game.

ASSISTED EFFORT

Freshman guard Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) currently leads New Hampshire with an average of 4.8 assists per game, ranking first in the America East. In total she has tallied 58 assists on the year, with her most impressive efforts coming against St. Joe's (Dec. 28) when she posted a career-best eight assists and a pair of seven-assist outings against Dartmouth (Nov. 16) and Quinnipiac (Dec. 22).

FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING

UNH head coach Maureen Magarity achieved her first career win as a bench boss against Dartmouth on Nov. 16. In six years as an assistant with Army, Fairfield and Marist, she compiled a 106-73 (.592) record. In her most recent coaching stop at West Point, Magarity helped lead the Knights to a record of 72-48, including a program-best 24-win campaign during the 2006-07 season. In her first three years on the job, Army averaged 20 wins a season, the best three-year span in program history.

I'M LOVIN' IT

Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) had a career night against Dartmouth on Nov. 16, posting 15 points and a career-high 13 rebounds. The outing was McDonald's first double-double of the season and the third of her career. McDonald reached her previous career-high of 10 rebounds during the 2009-10 season on two occasions.

MOVIN' ON UP

Senior center Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) has tallied 19 blocks this season, giving her 133 career blocks, a mark that currently ranks third all-time in program history. She has notched at least two swats in six of the last seven games. Last season she set UNH's single-season block record with 58, while also tying the program's single-game block record with seven. She finished the 2009-10 campaign with an average of 2.0 blocks per game, closing out the year notching a block in 22 of the last 24 games.

TORCHING THE NETS

The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team shot 51.4 percent (19-37) against then 12th-ranked Notre Dame (Nov. 12) and 51.9 percent (27-52) against Dartmouth (Nov. 16), marking the first time the Wildcats have shot over 50 percent in back-to-back games since 2000. The last time UNH achieved the feat came against Holy Cross (Nov. 21) and Dartmouth (Nov. 25), posting shooting clips of .556 and .550, respectively.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL ADDS SPOTO TO THE FOLD

Head coach Maureen Magarity and her staff recently announced that Stephanie Spoto (Pittsford, N.Y.) has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the University of New Hampshire women's basketball program and attend the school next fall.

"We are excited about the addition of Stephanie for next season," said Magarity. "She is a tremendous athlete, a tough defender and a slasher on offense.  She will bring great energy and has significant upside."

Spoto, who is currently a senior at Pittsford Sutherland High School, was recently named to the All-Greater Rochester Second Team after a solid junior campaign for the Knights. She is also coming off a two-year stint in which she played AAU with the Crystal City Stars Girls National Basketball club team.

The 5-foot-11-inch wing ranked just outside of the top-50 in scoring for her division with 132 points during her sophomore year, leading Pittsford Sutherland to a 14-7 record, including a 9-2 mark in league play. She finished the year with 6.3 points, 3.4 assists, 3.3 rebounds, and 1.0 steal per game. As a freshman she was equally productive, posting 4.9 points, 2.2 assists and 1.1 steals per game.

BELIVEAU NAMED TO AE PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM

Junior forward Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) of the University of New Hampshire women's basketball program was recently named to the America East Preseason All-Conference Team by the conference.

Beliveau is coming off her first full season of action since 2007-08 when she tabbed as the America East Rookie of the Year and was named to the conference's All-Rookie team. Playing in 28 of 29 contests, Beliveau averaged 10.0 points and 6.2 rebounds per game, both top marks among the conference's freshmen.

Rebounding from an ACL injury that sidelined the forward the entire 2008-09 season, Beliveau came back strong last year playing in 27 games, including 25 starts. She finished the season averaging 11.2 points and 6.1 rebounds per game, totals that ranked second on the team. She also proved to be deadly from beyond the arc, netting the most 3-pointers on the team, finishing 34-of-110 (.309) for the year.

Her defense didn't lack either, showcasing her skills as one of the team's best defenders, compiling a team-best 44 steals. Tallying multiple steals in 13 games, Beliveau tied her career-high with five steals against Seton Hall (12/3); marking the third time she has reached that mark in her UNH career.

LAST TIME OUT

The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team outscored the University of Rhode Island 18-4 in the third and final overtime period, outlasting the Rams, 88-74, in a see-saw battle on New Year's Day afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium. Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) led New Hampshire, notching her third double-double of the season, scoring a career-high 25 points and pulling down 10 rebounds to lead UNH to the win (3-9).

Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.), who was named the America East Player of the Game, registered her second straight double-double, establishing a career high with 22 points and snaring 12 boards in the program's first-ever triple-overtime game. The mark comes as her third double-double of the season and the fifth of her career. She also notched a season-best five blocks, marking the fourth straight game she has registered multiple blocks.

 Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) hit five of 10 three-point field goals to tally a career-best 21 points in the win. It is the first time at least two Wildcats have tallied 20-plus points in a game since Candace Williams (26) and Amy Simpson (21) did so against Stony Brook University (Jan. 24) during the 2008-09 campaign.

Rhode Island (5-8) was led by Megan Shoniker's 29 points, but the Rams dropped their fourth straight game, which includes a double-overtime defeat (Dec. 8), a single-overtime setback (Dec. 19) and Saturday's triple-overtime loss in Durham, where the Wildcats improve to 3-1 this season.

UNH got out of the gates slowly, missing its first seven shots from the floor, which allowed Rhode Island to seize an early 7-0 advantage just 2:30 into the contest. Following a timeout, the Wildcats responded with a 9-0 run to take a 9-7 lead. McDonald buried a pair of free throws and knocked down a three-point field goal during the spurt, while Beliveau added four points.

The Rams again built the lead to seven points at 23-16 with about seven minutes remaining in the half, only to see the 'Cats answer right back. Reed led the way, hitting a runner, followed with a bank shot and a three-pointer from the top of the key to spearhead a 10-2 run, putting UNH in front, 26-25, with under 1:30 to play in the first half. The Wildcats would get one more bucket, a Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) reverse lay-in as the shot clock was expiring, to help the 'Cats take a 28-27 advantage into the intermission.

McDonald erupted for seven points during a 10-2 run in the opening minutes of the second half, allowing UNH to lay claim to a 38-29 lead with 15:36 left in the contest. The lead reached 10 points at 41-31, courtesy of a Reed three-pointer with just under 15 minutes to go before URI began its rally. The combination of Shoniker and Sherrie Session (11 points, seven rebounds) sparked a 9-1 Rams' run, cutting the Wildcats' lead to 42-40 with 11:22 remaining. Rhode Island would knot the score, 49-49, when Session hit a pair of foul shots with 7:00 remaining.

Hogan banged in a 3-pointer from the top of the key and Reed slashed to the basket and banked in a layup from the left side on a feed from Hogan to help UNH take another six-point lead, 57-51, with two minutes remaining. Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.) added to the run, driving to the paint with the shot clock winding down and sank a 10-foot jumper from the left side at 1:20, but the Wildcats were held without a field-goal the rest of regulation, which ended at 60-60.

The first overtime was a defensive struggle, as each team managed only three points. Beliveau hit one foul shot, and Wells hit a pair from the charity stripe.

URI scored the first six points of the second overtime, taking a 69-63 lead on a hoop from Session and two baskets by Shoniker. The pendulum swung back in favor of the Wildcats when Wells and Hogan both knocked down a pair of clutch free throws, and Reed buried a wide open three-pointer from the left wing on a feed from Beliveau with 1:04 left in the second overtime to knot the score at 70-70.

The two teams exchanged baskets for the first few minutes of the third overtime, until Wells slashed to the paint and found a wide open Reed at the top of the key for a 3-pointer that extended UNH's lead to six, 78-72, with 1:40 remaining to put the nail in the coffin. Beliveau helped maintain the lead hitting seven of eight free throws in the third overtime, paving the way for a dramatic New Hampshire triumph.
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