ALBANY, N.Y. – Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) made a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to lift the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team to a 49-46 victory against Stony Brook University in Friday night's America East quarterfinal game at the University at Albany's SEFCU Arena.
UNH, the No. 5 seed of the tournament after finishing in a four-way tie with SBU in the conference standings at 6-10, improved to 12-17 overall and will make its first appearance in the semifinals since 2005. The Wildcats face top-seeded and host Albany on Sunday, March 10; game time is 30 minutes following the conclusion of the first semifinal game that begins at 11 a.m. SBU, which swept the regular-season series vs. the Wildcats, ends the season at 14-16.
Hogan finished with a team-high 13 points on 4 of 9 shooting from the floor, including 3-for-5 from 3-point range; she also recorded five rebounds and three assists. Morgan Frame (Waterville, Maine), who was named to the All-Conference Second Team on Thursday, recorded her third double-double of the season with 12 point and 11 rebounds, and she also had three steals.
Ariel Gaston (Toledo, Ohio) finished with nine points, three rebounds, two assists and three steals. Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.), another All-Conference Second Team selection, tallied seven points and five rebounds while Kaylee Kilpatrick (Saint John, New Brunswick) led all players with a career-high five assists.
SBU was led by Brittany Snow (15 points, seven rebounds) and Sabre Proctor (12 points, 12 rebounds).
Stony Brook called time out with possession and the score tied 46-46 with 49.5 seconds remaining in the second half. The Seawolves called another timeout with 27 seconds to play and nine seconds on the shot clock. Teasha Harris' desperation 3-pointer with the shot clock approaching zero was corralled by Gaston. UNH advanced the ball past midcourt and called time out with 12.8 seconds remaining.
In a first half that saw two ties and six lead changes, UNH took a 3-0 lead in the opening minute of play on Hogan's 3-pointer from the left wing. She hit a pair of free throws to reestablish a three-point lead, 5-2, at 17:35 but the Seawolves responded with a 5-0 spurt to take their first lead of the game, 7-5, at 17:01.
Frame's layup on the right blocks leveled the score at 16:38 and then Gaston buried a 3-pointer from the left wing to give the Wildcats a 10-7 advantage that they held at the first media timeout of the game at 14:58.
Stephanie Spoto (Pittsford, N.Y.) finished Gaston's feed on the left blocks to extend the lead to 12-7 at 14:02. SBU closed within one point, 12-11, on Snow's layup at 9:44, but the Wildcats responded at the other end of the court with a 3-pointer by Elizabeth Belanger (Acton, Mass.). Frame scored from the right post and Gaston hit one free throw to give New Hampshire its largest first-half lead, 17-11, at 6:50.
Stony Brook regained the lead, 18-17, with a 7-0 run spanning the next 4 minutes, 37 seconds that was capped by a Dani Kupenger 3-pointer at 2:13.
Following a UNH timeout, Hogan found Kilpatrick on the left blocks and she banked in a shot off the glass to put the 'Cats back in front, 19-18. Miranda Jenkins' 3-pointer was matched by Hogan to give UNH a 22-21 halftime lead.
The Seawolves leveled the score three times in the second half but never led again.
Gerda Gatling hit the second of two foul shots to knot the score at 22 before Frame put back her own miss and Gaston hit another 3-pointer to put the Wildcats in front 27-22. The teams exchanged scores the next six minutes as Klupenger's third 3-pointer of the game lifted SBU within 35-32 at 11:41.
Reed drilled a 3-pointer from the top-left side to ignite a 7-0 run that included a pair of Gaston free throws and Hogan's jumper from the right wing. UNH built its first double-digit lead, 42-32, when Hogan hit that shot at 8:08.
Frame pivoted from the right blocks to the middle of the lane for a layup that reestablished a 10-point lead, 44-34, at 6:04. At that point, Proctor single-handedly lifted Stony Brook back into the game. Her three-point play at 5:35 and one foul shot at 4:58 trimmed the deficit to six points.
Following a pair of Snow free throws at 3:52, Proctor's jumper lifted SBU within 44-42 at 2:59 and then her layup evened the score with 2:03 remaining. UNH called timeout and regained the lead, 46-44, on a layup by Frame with 1:33 to play.
At the other end of the court, Snow was fouled and made both foul shots to tie the score at 46 with 1:07 on the clock. Hogan's drove the right wing and took a shot that caromed off the rim, but then the Wildcats' defensive stand, which included a block by Frame, set up her buzzer beater.
Stony Brook shot 25.9% (15 of 58) from the floor to mark the lowest field goal percentage by a UNH opponent this season. The Wildcats shot better from 3-point range (7-16; 43.8%) than overall from floor (18-53; 34.0%).