Women's hoop falls to Binghamton, 64-55

DURHAM, N.H. – Senior Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) scored a game-high 16 points and tallied 11 rebounds for her America East-leading eighth double-double, and the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team closed the game on a 17-2 run, but Binghamton held on for a 64-55 victory on Sunday afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium.

The Wildcats drop to 10-9 on the season and 3-4 in the conference, while the Bearcats improve to 10-10 overall and 4-3 in conference play.

Beliveau was named the America East Player of the Game for UNH as she shot 5-of-16 from the field and finished with three assists and three steals. Sophomore Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) posted 12 points and eight rebounds, shooting 4-of-6 from beyond the arc, while junior Morgan Frame (Waterville, Maine) added 11 points to round out the double-figure scorers.

Senior Sinead O'Reilly was named the player of the game for Binghamton as she finished with 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting, leading five Bearcats in double-figures.

As a team, the Wildcats shot 32.2 percent (19-59) from the field, while the Bearcats shot at a 43.9 percent clip.

Binghamton opened the contest with a 7-1 run over the first 3:22 of play, but the Wildcats clawed back from the early deficit with three straight baskets in the paint to even the score at 7-7 at the 14:14 mark.

The teams then traded layups and trips to the free throw line, keeping the score tied at 14 apiece, before Viive Rebane hit a short jumper to give the visitors the two-point advantage. UNH answered two possessions later, as Hogan stepped back and drilled a 3-pointer to push the Wildcats on top, 17-16, with 6:39 left in the first half.

The Bearcats responded with seven straight points, until Hogan halted the short stretch with another 3-pointer, trimming the deficit to three, 24-20. Following a free throw on the other end, Beliveau ended the half with a driving layup to trim the Binghamton lead to 24-22 at halftime.

After the break, Beliveau picked up right where she left off at the end of the half as she drained a short jumper to even the score at 24-24. The teams then exchanged slim leads and matched back-to-back 3-pointers, including Hogan's third of the contest, before Orla O'Reilly countered with a trifecta to give the Bearcats the 33-29 advantage.

On the next possession, Beliveau drilled a long range shot to pull the home side within one, 33-32, with 15:51 remaining, but the Bearcats answered back with 19 unanswered points for the 52-32 lead at the 9:21 mark.

Down by 24 with 5:09 left to play, the Wildcats ended the game with a 13-2 run to pull within single digits, but the Bearcats held on for the victory.  

The Wildcats return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 25 when they visit Maine at 6 p.m. UNH returns to Lundholm Gymnasium on Saturday, Jan. 28 for a matchup against UMBC at 1:00 p.m. For tickets, and more information, visit www.unhwildcats.com or call (603) 862-4000, extension 5.

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