NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Junior point guard and captain Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) scored a game-high 14 points, including 4 of 4 shooting from the foul line in the final minute, to lead the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team to Wednesday night's 57-51 non-conference victory against Yale University at the John J. Lee Amphitheater.
UNH, which shot well from the floor (10-21; 47.6%) and the foul line (12-14; 85.7%) in the second half, is 1-0 after winning its season opener for the second consecutive season and improving to 10-1 lifetime against Yale, which is now 0-2 this year.
Hogan, 8-for-8 overall from the foul line and 3 of 6 from the floor, also finished with a game-high four assists and two steals to garner America East Player of the Game recognition. Morgan Frame (Waterville, Maine) netted 13 points in just 21 minutes as she sat on the bench for a majority of the second half due to foul trouble. Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) contributed eight points and a game-high 11 rebounds while Kaylee Kilpatrick (St. John, New Brunswick) recorded seven points and a personal-best eight rebounds.
Yale was led by Sarah Halejian (12 points) and Nyasha Sarju (9).
With the score tied 46-46, Hogan drilled a left baseline jumper to give the 'Cats a two-point lead with 3:12 remaining in the second half. Following a defensive stop, UNH executed a high-low set in which Kilpatrick found Frame in the paint and she made an 8-foot jumper to extend the advantage to 50-46.
Yale's Janna Graf scored from the right blocks to trim the deficit to 50-48 at 1:32. On the next possession, Frame made one foul shot to extend the lead to three points at 57 seconds. The Bulldogs called a 30-second timeout with 46.3 seconds left, Graf missed a layup and UNH's Kilpatrick snared the defensive rebound.
Yale fouled Hogan with 30.2 seconds to play and the Wildcat captain made both foul shots to give New Hampshire a 53-48 lead. UNH called its last 30-second timeout, but Halejian drilled a 3-pointer from the top of the key to lift the home squad within 53-51 with 19.4 seconds remaining.
Yale immediately fouled Hogan on the inbounds play and she made both foul shots to create a 55-51 margin with 17.4 to play. Halejian attempted another 3-pointer from the left wing with nine seconds, but this one was off the mark and Reed corralled the rebound. She was fouled and converted both free throws to close the game scoring at 57-51 and match the largest lead of the game.
UNH made 7 of 8 fouls shots in the last 72 seconds to secure the victory.
The Wildcats built a 6-2 lead in the opening three minutes of the game on baskets by Frame, Kilpatrick and Reed. Yale took its first lead of the game, 14-12, on Nyash Sarju's 3-pointer at 9:09. UNH regained the lead, 16-14, on a Stephanie Spoto (Pittsford, N.Y.) basket at 8:20 and a pair of Hogan free throws at 8:01.
The 'Cats extended the advantage to 20-16 on a Kilpatrick putback at 3:57, but Yale scored five consecutive points on Janna Graf's 3-pointer at 3:24 and Allie Messimer foul shots at 2:59. Wells was fouled on a 3-point attempt and made one free throw to forge the sixth tie of the first half, 21-21, at 2:10, then Reed converted one of her three first-half offensive rebounds into a layup to put the 'Cats back in front, 23-21, at 1:26. Reed netted another layup with 35 seconds left in the first half and Meredith Boardman answered with a layup to send the teams into halftime with UNH leading 25-23.
In the second half with the score tied at 29, UNH built its largest lead on consecutive field goals by Lauren Wells (West Chester, Pa.), Elizabeth Belanger (Acton, Mass.) and Kilpatrick. Yale ended a nearly four-minute scoring drought on an Amanda Tyson layup at 12:58 to lift the Bulldogs within 35-31.
With the 'Cats holding a 40-36 lead at 8:49, Yale went on a 7-0 spurt spanning the next 2:20 to take a 43-40 advantage – it was the home team's first lead since 21-20 with three minutes left in the first half.
Yale led 46-42 but UNH went on an 8-0 run to take a lead, 50-46, it would not relinquish. A pair of Hogan foul shots at 5:00 was followed by Frame's layup that tied the score at 4:23. The spurt continued with the aforementioned Hogan jumper from the left baseline and Frame's jumper in the paint.
Hogan climbed one spot on UNH's all-time assist list; she entered the game tied with Orsi Farkas (1996-2000; 203) and supplanted Sheila Danker (1993-97; 206) at No. 15 by increasing her career assist total to 207.
New Hampshire continues its season-opening stretch of three consecutive road games Nov. 17 (1 p.m.) at College of the Holy Cross in a rematch of last year's Women's Basketball Invitational first-round game. The Wildcats' home opener is Nov. 25 (1 p.m.) vs. Cornell University.