DURHAM, N.H. – Kaylee Kilpatrick (Saint John, New Brunswick) and Cari Reed (Owsego, N.Y.) scored 16 points apiece to lead the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team to Tuesday night's 61-54 America East victory against the University of Maine at Lundholm Gym.
UNH won its sixth consecutive game vs. Maine and second straight overall to improve to 8-12, 3-5 in America East and 5-3 at home. The Black Bears, who remain winless on the road (11 games), are now 2-19, 1-7.
Kilpatrick, selected UNH's America East Player of the Game, made 6 of 11 field goal attempts and 4 of 5 free throws, including two with 14 seconds remaining to give the Wildcats a 61-52 lead, for 16 points. She also tallied four rebounds, three assists, two steals and a career-high four blocks.
Reed made a pair of 3-pointers to increase her career total to 161 and went 6-for-7 from the foul line, including two with 40 seconds to play that gave UNH a 59-50 advantage, to match her career high of six free throws.
Morgan Frame (Waterville, Maine) pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds and equaled her personal best of four assists for the third consecutive game.
Corinne Wellington, the Black Bears' Player of the Game, recorded team highs in points (14) and rebounds (seven). Liz Wood netted 12 points while Ashleigh Roberts had 10 points and seven rebounds, and Courtney Anderson scored 10 points.
The Wildcats quickly jumped out to a 5-0 lead on Reed's 3-pointer from the left corner and an Elizabeth Belanger (Acton, Mass.; eight points, five rebounds) jumper. UNH extended the advantage to double-digits, 14-4, at 12:59 on a short jumper in the paint by Kilpatrick. Reed hit another jumper and 3-pointer during that spurt.
The Black Bears trailed 20-10 at 9:16 but clawed within four points, 22-18, wth an 8-2 run in which Anderson and Wellington both hit a pair of baskets. The teams exchanged scores the rest of the half and New Hampshire took a 31-24 lead into halftime following an offensive rebound and layup by Kendall Martenet (Waukesha, Wis.) with 15 seconds on the clock.
The 'Cats reestablished a double-digit lead of 37-27 at 16:31 when Reed hit two free throws. Danielle Walczak's short jumper ignited a 10-0 run that leveled the game, 39-39, at 13:01 on a layup by Roberts. Out of the media timeout, Roberts had a chance to give Maine its first lead of the game but did not complete the three-point play with a missed free throw.
UNH slowly pulled away the next seven minutes to build a 50-42 lead at 6:59 and the Black Bears did not get closer than six points the rest of the way – 52-46 at 4:31 and 54-48 at 3:31. Belanger's 3-pointer extended the cushion to nine points with 2:32 remaining.
Maine called time out at 1:16 and Wellington hit a layup eight seconds later to lift the visitors within 57-50. The Black Bears opted not to foul and send the 'Cats to the foul line for a 1-and-1, but eventually fouled Reed when she drove to the basket with 40 seconds to play and she hit both free throws.
Walczak hit a layup with 29 seconds on the clock to make the score 59-52 and Wood immediately fouled Reed, who missed the front end of the 1-and-1. Wood grabbed the defensive rebound, but Anderson's 3-pointer hit off the rim and Kilpatrick snared the ball. She was immediately fouled and hit both foul shots with 14 seconds to play to give UNH a 61-52 lead. Roberts was fouled on a loose ball moments later and went 2-for-2 from the foul line to close the scoring.
UNH recorded a 41-35 rebounding advantage and recorded 15 assists on 23 field goals to mark the team's second highest assist total of the season. The 'Cats also committed a season-low nine turnovers.
Maine shot 41.8% (23-55) from the floor and 42.9% (6-14) from the foul line.
New Hampshire returns to action Feb. 2 (2 p.m.) at Stony Brook University. The Wildcats' next home game is Feb. 6 (7 p.m.) against the University of Vermont.