Game Notes: Women's Basketball Tips Off at Holy Cross (Nov. 17)

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The Matchup
    The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team, which opened the season with a 57-51 road win vs. Yale on Wednesday, returns to the road for a Nov. 17 tipoff against College of the Holy Cross at Hart Recreation Center (Worcester, Mass.). Game time is 1 p.m.
    UNH has a 7-15 lifetime record against Holy Cross, and that includes a pair of losses last season and a 2-8 road ledger. The Crusaders upended the Wildcats, 61-50 last December at UNH's Lundholm Gym and the teams met again in March for a first-round matchup of the Women's Basketball Invitational at Hart Center. Holy Cross fended off the visiting 'Cats down the stretch to prevail 63-59.
    Holy Cross has won each of the last three meetings. New Hampshire's most recent victory was Dec. 20, 2009, when the Wildcats won 80-72 in Durham.
    UNH has lost each of the last three matchups at Hart Center and is 1-4 in its last five trips to that venue (dating back to November 1996). The most recent Wildcats' win in Worcester was Nov. 21, 1998 (78-77).
    The series began Feb. 15, 1983 with a UNH victory (69-57). These programs played annually spanning the 1987-88 through 2000-01 seasons with Holy Cross winning 12 of the 14 games. The series resumed in December 2009 with the aforementioned UNH home win.
    Only one of 22 games has gone into overtime – Jan. 7, 1989, when Holy Cross outlasted New Hampshire in double overtime, 83-80, at Lundholm Gym.

The State of New Hampshire
    New Hampshire tipped off the 2012-13 season Nov. 14 with a 57-51 win at Yale University. It marked the second consecutive season-opening victory for the Wildcats, who prevailed 62-57 last year at Brown University.
    UNH has not opened a season with consecutive victories since the 2005-06 season, when the 'Cats won at Yale (75-59) and home vs. Marist College (62-48). Between that season and this, UNH won season openers three times (2007-08, 2009-10, 2011-12) but lost the following game.
    UNH, under the direction of third-year head coach Maureen Magarity,     returns 11 letterwinners, including three starters, from last year's team that recorded 16 victories and advanced to the WBI tournament. At 16-14 overall, it was the Wildcats' first winning season since 2006 and the highest single-season victory total since 2002. And at 9-7 in America East, the fourth-place finish in the league standings marked the best since 2005.
    Statistically, UNH returns three of its top four scorers, two of its top three rebounders, the top two 3-point shooters, two of the top four assist leaders and a player who started all 30 games a year ago.

What Just Happened
    In the season opener, UNH made 7 of 8 free throws in the last 72 seconds to fend off Yale University in a 57-51 victory at the John J. Lee Amphitheater on Nov. 14.
    Junior point guard Kelsey Hogan scored a game-high 14 points, including 8-for-8 from the foul line (4 of 4 in the last minute), and also finished with a game-high four assists. Senior forward Morgan Frame followed with 13 points, senior guard Cari Reed tallied eight points and a game-high 11 rebounds, sophomore forward Kaylee Kilpatrick contributed seven points and a career-high eight rebounds and freshman guard Elizabeth Belanger came off the bench to add eight points.
    In the first half, UNH scored the initial four points of the game and that was the largest lead in the opening 20 minutes for either team as there was four lead changes and six ties.
    The Wildcats led 25-23 at halftime and extended the margin to a game-high six points, 35-29, at 14:17 on a 6-0 run that consisted of field goals by Lauren Wells, Belanger and Kilpatrick.
    Yale went on a 7-0 spurt spanning 1:48 to transform a 40-36 deficit into a 43-40 lead with 6:35 on the clock and pushed the margin to 44-40 at 5:46.
    UNH trailed 46-42 but scored eight consecutive points to take a 50-46 lead with 2:37 remaining and Yale never pulled even again.

What Happens Next
    New Hampshire concludes its stretch of three consecutive road games on Tuesday, Nov. 20 at Boston College. Game time at Conte Forum is 7 p.m. The Wildcats' home opener is Sunday, Nov. 25 against Cornell University. Opening tipoff at Lundholm Gym is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Marked Improvement
    New Hampshire improved its win total seven games from the 2010-11 (nine victories) to 2011-12 seasons (16 victories) to tie the second-highest margin of improvement in program history. UNH also saw a seven-game improvement from 1998 (12) to 1999 (19), while the highest mark of eight games was from 1991 (10) to 1992 (18).

On The Road
    New Hampshire opens the 2012-13 season with three consecutive road games to match the program's longest stretch of road games at the outset of a season. The road began Wednesday, Nov. 14 with a 57-51 win at Yale University.
    The only other time it happened was in 1990-91 (Holy Cross, 93-65 loss; Brown, 78-73 loss; UMass, 75-54 win). Between then and now, the 'Cats did open three consecutive seasons – 1992-93, 1993-94 and 1994-95 – with three consecutive games away from home; in all three years, a road game was followed by two tourney games.

Road Warriors
    Last season, UNH played 18 of its 30 games away from Lundholm Gym with a 9-7 road record and 1-1 ledger in neutral-site games. The Wildcats were particularly strong on the road in the opening month (5-1 record) with victories at Brown (62-57), Cornell (63-62), Dartmouth (58-53), Rhode Island (52-33) and Wagner (73-72, overtime); the only loss was at Central Connecticut State.

This Date In History
    In the 37-year history of UNH varsity women's basketball, the Wildcats have a 4-2 overall record on Nov. 17. Most recently, the 'Cats lost 72-56 at the University of South Florida in 2007. One year earlier, UNH was victorious at home vs. Wagner (80-70).

Captain of the 'Cats
    Junior guard Kelsey Hogan is captain of the 2012-13 UNH Wildcats; last year, she was a co-captain alongside Denise Beliveau and started all 30 games. Hogan is a mulitple threat in the backcourt – as the quarterback of the offense, she is strong on the dribble and an excellent passer; she is also an accurate jumpshooter who led not only the team but the America East conference in 3-point field goal percentage (.446; 41-for-92).
    Hogan also led New Hampshire in assists, ranked second in both 3-point field goals made and minutes (33.9 mpg) as well as third in scoring(10.2 ppg), field goals made and attempted, field goal percentage (.386) and free throws made and attempted.
    With those statistics, Hogan's other conference rankings included fifth in FT percentage (.896), seventh in minutes, 11th in both scoring and assists and 12th in field goal percentage.
    Other stats illustrate Hogan is a multi-dimensional overall player. In addition to her offensive prowess, she also tied for second on the squad in steals and was third in rebounding (3.8 rpg).

Framework For Success
    Senior forward Morgan Frame was selected to the America East Preseason All-Conference Team at the league's Media Day on Oct. 23.
    In her first year as a UNH Wildcat in 2012, Morgan Frame led the team in scoring (16.0 points per game) and ranked second in rebounds (7.5 per game) to garner America East All-Conference Second Team recognition. She would have led the league in scoring and ranked No. 8 in rebounding if she met the minimum requirement of 75% games played (Frame played in 22 of 30 games – 73.3%).
    Frame led the team in field goal percentage (.443), and she also attempted the most free throws despite missing eight games (due to NCAA transfer regulations).
    The 6-foot-1 forward, a two-time America East Player of the Week honoree who was named UNH's Player of the Game five times, ranked second among Wildcats in field goals attempted and made as well as made free throws.
    Frame was UNH's top scorer 12 times (in 22 games) and the top rebounder nine times; she led the squad in both statistics seven times and tallied seven double-doubles, including a 35-point, 12-rebound effort against Wagner in just her second game as a Wildcat. The 35 points marked the highest single-game output by any America East player last year.

Going Back To The Wells Again
    Another player who returns with starting experience is senior guard Lauren Wells, who utilizes her quickness and athleticism to drive past defenders – and be a disruptive force at the other end of the court as a defender – but she can also hit the mid-range jumper.
    Wells missed the entire 2012 season due to injury, but she started 21 of 29 games in 2011 as a junior and was in the starting lineup all 31 games in '10. In her junior season, Wells ranked third on the team in steals, fourth in assists and fifth in scoring; she also led the team in free throw percentage and ranked ninth in America East in 3-point field goal percentage.

Deep Threat
    Senior shooting guard Cari Reed is a third returning starter from last year's lineup. She played in 28 of 30 games with 22 starts a year ago, when the 6-footer led the team in 3-point field goals made (44) and attempted (123). Reed also ranked second among all 'Cats in 3-point field goal percentage (.358) and blocks.
    The sharpshooter rewrote the UNH record book with eight 3-pointers in a game against Harvard at Lundholm Gym on Dec. 6, 2011; she had shared the previous benchmark of six 3-pointers in a game with six others. Reed finished that game vs. Harvard with a career-high 32 points.
    In other statistics, Reed ranked fourth in scoring average (7.8 ppg), field goal percentage (.383) and minutes (25.8 per game).

A Lot To Lose
    One of the starters and statistical leaders lost to graduation is forward Denise Beliveau, who is one of the top all-around players in program history. She led the 2012 team in points (423), rebounds (8.6 per game), field goals made (145) and attempted (352), free throws made (98), steals (66) and minutes (35.1 per game) en route to garnering America East All-Conference First Team, All-Defensive Team and All-Academic Team; in addition, Beliveau ranked second in both field goal percentage (.412) and free throw percentage (.838) as well as third in 3-point FG percentage (.337) and assists (46).
    In the America East conference rankings, Beliveau was in the top 5 in five statistical categories and among the top 10 in two other stats.
    On the program's career leaderboard, she ranks sixth in scoring (1,365 points), fourth in both rebounds (843) and 3-pointers (141), third in steals (202) and 18th in assists (202).

Conference Call
    The 2011-12 Wildcats led the America East conference in both free throw percentage (.709; 375-529) and 3-point field goal percentage (.324; 152-469). On the individual leaderboards, Kelsey Hogan ranked first in 3-point field goal percentage (.446; 41-92) and Denise Beliveau was tops in defensive rebounds (6.2 per game).

Milestone Watch
    One current 'Cat is already in the Top 10 on UNH's career leaderboard for 3-point field goals made and another will approach that list during the 2012-13 season. Senior shooting guard Cari Reed is currently No. 8 with 121 3-pointers while junior point guard Kelsey Hogan is 13th at 86. Hogan is also at No. 15 in career assists with 207. Here is a look at the career lists:
   3-pointers made
5.     Ashley Cerniglia    2004-07    131
6.    Julie Donlon    1987-91    126
7.    Danielle Clark    2003-07    123
8.    Cari Reed    2009-    121
9.    Ebony Woods    2002-05    109
10.    Lindsay Adams    2001-05    104
11.    Marcie Lane    1991-94    95
12.    Adriane Domanski    1998-00    87
13.    Kelsey Hogan    2008-    86
   Assists
13.    Steph Schubert    1994-98    226
14.    Colleen Mullen    2001-03    218
15.    Kelsey Hogan    2008-    207

Wildcats On the Air
    The Wildcat Sports Radio Network will broadcast a total of 12 UNH women's basketball games during the 2012-13 season. All 11 home games as well as the Nov. 28 road game at Harvard will be on the air. The Wildcat Sports Radio Network affiliates include:
   WGIR-AM 610 (flagship station) – Manchester
   WPKX-AM 930 (flagship station) – Rochester    
   WQSO-FM 96.7 (flagship station) – Portsmouth
   WNTK-FM 99.7 – New London
    A total of four games will be televised, including home games vs. Central Connecticut State University and Boston University. Here is the complete schedule.
Dec. 9    Central Conn State    WBIN and FOX College Sports Atlantic
Jan. 16    at Albany    ESPN3
Jan. 19    Boston U.    WBIN and FOX College Sports Atlantic
Jan. 26    at Binghamton    Time Warner Cable
    Another option for fans to follow live action of the UNH women's basketball home games is online videostreaming at unhwildcats.tv

Incoming
    The UNH women's basketball program welcomes four newcomers to the 2012-13 squad and that includes sophomore center Corinne Coia, who transferred following her freshman year (2011-12) at the University of Rhode Island; she is ineligible to play for the Wildcats this season.
    Kendall Martenet is the other new addition to the frontcourt. The 6-2 forward was a three-time captain at Mukwonago High School, where she led the team in rebounding as a junior and senior.
    Elizabeth Belanger and Victoria Duffey join the Wildcat backcourt. Belanger garnered ESPN Boston All-State Team and Boston Herald All-Scholastic Team, Lowell Sun Player of the Year and Dual County League MVP accolades at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School.
    Duffey comes to UNH from Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes after lettering at Walled Lake Central High School for three years. She was a three-year starting point guard and two-time captain at Walled Lake Central, where she earned three All-Conference and two Academic All-State accolades.

For Openers
    New Hampshire has a 23-15 overall record in season openers, and that includes 7-9 on the road as well as 8-1 against Ivy League schools following the Nov. 14 win at Yale University by a score of 57-51. Wednesday's game marked the third consecutive year UNH opened on the road; last year, the Wildcats were 62-57 victors at Brown and in November 2010 the 'Cats lost at Notre Dame.

Leader of the 'Cat Pack
    The 2012-13 season marks the third as UNH Wildcats head coach for Maureen Magarity (Marist '03), who became the sixth head coach in program history in May 2010 and the youngest coach of a Division I team – men's or women's – in the country.
    Magarity has quickly made a positive impact on the program with a 25-34 record in two seasons; in comparison, UNH was a combined 33-87 the four years prior to her arrival.
    And in just her second year at the helm in Durham, Magarity guided the Wildcats to their second postseason appearance (beyond conference postseason play) in the program's 37-year history when UNH advanced to the 2012 Women's Basketball Invitational. New Hampshire finished the year with a 16-14 overall record to mark the team's first winning season since 2006 and most wins since 2002.
    In her first season, Magarity led the Wildcats to a 9-20 overall record and they doubled their conference wins from the previous season.

America East Preseason Prognostications
    UNH tied for fourth in the 2012-13 America East Preseason Coaches' Poll that was released in late October. The Wildcats received 37 points to tie with the University of Vermont behind University at Albany (61 points; five first-place votes), Boston University (56; two) and University of Hartford (54; two). UMBC (34), University of Maine (17), Binghamton University (16) and Stony Brook University (12) complete the nine-team poll.
    Senior forward Morgan Frame was voted to the Preseason All-Conference Team. She was an All-Conference Second Team selection in 2012.

Scouting the Crusaders
    The College of the Holy Cross (Worcester, Mass.) enters the weekend with a 1-1 record following a 71-52 loss to Boston College on Tuesday, Nov. 13. The Crusaders opened the season Nov. 9 with an 87-71 win – also at home – against Yale University.
    Through two games, junior point guard Alex Smith leads the team in scoring (16.0 ppg), 3-point field goals (4), assists (11) and steals (4); she is also second in rebounding (6.5 rpg).
    Junior guard Brisje Malone (14.5 ppg) and sophomor forward Emily Parker (13.5 ppg; 6.0 rpg) are the other double-digit scorers while junior forward Christine Ganser is the rebounding leader (7.5 per game).
    Holy Cross, under the guidance of 28th-year head coach Bill Gibbons, was picked third in the Patriot League preseason poll. The Crusaders finished 19-15 overall last season and fifth in the league standings at 7-7 before advancing to the league title game and WBI tournament. The top five scorers return from that team, including Preseason All-League selections Amy Lepley (13.4 ppg, 6.4 rpg) and the amorementioned Smith (12.9 ppg, 5.5 apg, 2.1 spg).

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