DURHAM, N.H. - The University of New Hampshire men's basketball team will play its final home game of the calendar year when it plays host to Army at Lundholm Gymnasium on Thursday, Dec. 9 (7 p.m.). Links to live audio and live video, as well as live stats, will be available at www.UNHWildcats.com.
The Wildcats and Black Knights meet for the ninth time, with Army leading the all-time series, 5-3. The 'Cats have won the past two meetings in Durham. After losing the first four meetings, UNH had won three in a row before dropping last season's contest at Christl Arena, 54-46, Dec. 22, 2009.
Junior Tyrone Conley poured in 17 points to lead the Wildcats.
With the loss the Wildcats fell to 4-5 on the season and lost to Army for the first time in four games, while the Black Knights improved to 9-2.
Conley, the America East Player of the Game, was 5-for-13 from the field, including 3-for-8 from behind the arc. He also made four of his five free throws to go along with four rebounds and two assists in 36 minutes.
Army was led by Josh Miller, who had 13 points.
Neither team scored until the 16:56 mark when senior Radar Onguetou drained a 3-pointer. Army recorded its first field goal at the 15:59 mark on a jumper by Cleveland Richard that made it 3-2. Trailing 6-5, Conley knocked down a jumper with 13:07 remaining in the second half to give UNH what would be its final lead of the afternoon, as Josh Miller sank a 3-pointer 1:11 later to put the Black Knights up 9-7.
Army extended its lead to 11-7 before Conley hit a 3 to cut his team's deficit to one. UNH found itself behind, 17-14, when junior Alvin Abreu knocked down a trifecta to knot the game with 3:42 to play in the opening half. The Black Knights closed the half on a 7-1 run, however, and took a 24-18 lead into the locker room.
The teams traded baskets to start the half, and after a Chris Walker layup, Abreu sank another triple to make it 28-23 with 17:58 to play. From there, however, Army caught fire and knocked down three straight 3-pointers to spark a 13-0 run that gave it a 41-28 lead - its largest of the game - at 13:10.
Conley followed with a 3 of his own and classmate Dane DiLiegro hit a layup that cut the Army lead to 13 at 10:53. Conley's jumper at 8:09 brought UNH to within 10 before Jeremy Hence and Abreu traded 3-pointers to make it 48-38. Conley hit a 3 of his own to pull within nine, but back-to-back baskets by Hence and Miller opened the Black Knight lead up to 54-41 with 2:14 remaining. Onguetou hit a jump hook in the lane at 1:51 before Abreu closed the scoring with another trey to make it 54-46 with seven ticks left.
Abreu finished with 12 points on 4 of 8 shooting from deep and added four rebounds and three assists in 36 minutes. DiLiegro scored seven points, ripped down a game-high 15 boards, added an assist and was a perfect 3-for-3 from the stripe in 38 minutes. Onguetou, meanwhile, posted seven points and five rebounds.
Army outshot UNH, 39.2 percent (20-51) to 31.1 percent (14-45), but the Wildcats did shoot 71.4 percent (10-14) at the line.
Richard and Hence each added 11 for the Black Knights.
LAST TIME OUT
Senior Dane DiLiegro scored 20 points and sophomore Ferg Myrick added 17 as the Wildcats defeated Colgate on Dec. 4 at Cotterell Court.
The victory was number 300 of his career for head coach Bill Herrion. The 20-year head man was the 72nd active head coach and 284th all time to reach the milestone.
The Wildcats improved to 5-2 on the season, the program's first 5-2 start since 1994-95 and just its third since the 1940-41 campaign. The team's 2-2 start on the road is also its best since 1994-95. The Raiders fell to 0-6 on the season.
DiLiegro, the America East Player of the Game, narrowly missed his third double-double of the season as he pulled in nine rebounds. DiLiegro was an efficient 4 of 7 from the field and tallied three steals in 31 minutes. He was also a perfect 12-for-12 at the line, tying Jermaine Anderson, Chris Brown and Matt Alosa for the school record for most free throws made in a game without a miss.
Myrick was 5-for-10 from the floor and 6 of 8 at the line, while recording five rebounds and two blocks in 31 minutes. Myrick has now scored in double figures the first seven games of the year, as well as eight straight and 10 of the last 11 dating back to last season.
Joe Hoban, Yaw Gyawu and Nick Pascale led Colgate with 16, 14 and 12 points, respectively.
Buckets by Myrick and DiLiegro led UNH to a 4-0 lead before Gyawu made 1 of 2 at the line to break the short run. Myrick then sank his only 3-pointer of the game to make it 7-1 just 2:47 in. Junior Brian Benson then answered a Gyawu layup with a baseline jumper with 15:52 remaining.
Sophomore point guard Chandler Rhoads made 1 of 2 at the stripe to push the UNH lead to 10-3 at 15:24. The lead was still seven after a pair of DiLiegro free throws when a Myrick layup made it 14-5 with 14:02 left. Gyawu and Benson traded baskets before a 3-pointer from Joe Hoban sliced the deficit to 16-12 at 11:11.
The UNH lead was still four (18-14) when a 7-0 run pushed it to 11. Benson sparked the run with a 3 from the top of the key and after a pair of Myrick free throws, capped the run with an emphatic two-handed put-back dunk off a missed 3-pointer that made it 25-14 with 7:49 to play.
Freshman Jordon Bronner pushed the lead to 13 with a jumper from the right elbow with 3:50 remaining before a three-point play from Pascale made it 29-19. A Rhoads basket, followed by two DiLiegro free throws, pushed the lead to 14 before Sterling Melville closed the first-half scoring with a dunk that made it 33-21 with 37 seconds to play. The Wildcats improved to 4-1 when leading at the half.
DiLiegro scored the first four points of the second half, overall, and the first six points for UNH to make it 39-23 just two minutes in. Myrick followed with a jumper at 17:37 that gave the Wildcats their largest lead of the game at 18.
After Mike Venezia and senior Tyrone Conley traded 3-pointers, Colgate went on a 16-5 run that was capped by a Brandon James 3-pointer with 10:53 to play. Myrick stopped the bleeding with a jumper before Venezia sank 1 of 2 at the line and Hoban's layup sliced it to 51-45 with 8:20 left.
Four straight points from DiLiegro stretched the lead back to 10, but Gyawu answered with four straight points of his own to make it 55-49 with 4:23 remaining. DiLiegro hit two more from the line before Mitch Rolls knocked down a 3-pointer to make it 57-52 with 3:50 to go. Myrick made a pair at the line and then sunk 1 of 2 on the following possession to push the lead back to eight at 60-52 with 55 seconds on the clock.
The lead was still eight at 61-53 when a Hoban 3 sliced it to five with 36 seconds left. Colgate fouled the rest of the way, but the Wildcats hit four free throws to offset the Raiders four points. UNH is now 4-0 this season in games decided by five points or less.
Benson finished with a season-high nine points and matched his career best with nine boards. Conley scored 11 points and added two assists, two rebounds and two steals, while Rhoads tallied six points, four rebounds and two assists.
UNH was outshot 41 percent (21-51) to 39 percent (19-49), including 35 percent (6-17) to 24 percent (4-17) from deep, but made 79 percent (23-29) of its free throws. The battle on the glass was even at 33, but the Wildcats turned the ball over just nine times and forced 14 turnovers.
With the Wildcats' 65-60 win at Colgate on Dec. 4, head coach Bill Herrion recorded his 300th career win. The 20-year bench boss became the 284th college basketball head coach, including the 72nd active head coach, to reach the 300-win plateau. Herrion also reached another milestone earlier in his career against Colgate, winning his 50th career game at UNH in a 63-55 win at Lundholm Gymnasium on Dec. 30, 2009.
In the Wildcats' 65-60 win at Colgate on Dec. 4, senior Dane DiLiegro matched Matt Alosa, Chris Brown and Jermaine Anderson when he tied the school record for most free throws made in a game without a miss after he was a perfect 12-for-12 at the line. A career 54 percent (109-202) free throw shooter entering the season, DiLiegro is hitting at a 90 percent (26-29) clip this year and ranks second in the conference in the category.
The Wildcats have started 5-2 for the first time since the 1994-95 season and just the third time since 1940-41. UNH, which has not been 6-2 since '94-'95, has been 6-2 four times overall and just once since 1940-41.
The Wildcats are 2-2 on the road for the first time since the 1994-95 season. A win at Rhode Island on Dec. 18 would give the 'Cats a 3-2 road record for the first time since '94-'95.
The Wildcats are 15-4 (.789) in their last 19 home contests dating back to 2008-09. The 'Cats finished last season 9-4 at home, their best mark since the 1994-95 campaign when they were 8-2 in Durham.
CLOSE AND LATE
After going 15-32 from 2005-06 through last season, the Wildcats are a perfect 4-0 this year in games decided by five points or less.
The Wildcats are the only team in America East with three players in the top 14 in scoring. Ferg Myrick (14.3 ppg) is ninth, while Tyrone Conley (12.3) and Dane DiLiegro (12.3) are tied for 13th.
Sophomore Ferg Myrick has scored in double-digits in all six games to start the season. The last time a Wildcat began a season with six straight double-digit scoring games was 2000-01 when Austin Ganly scored in double figures the first 12 games of the year. Myrick has now netted 10-plus points in seven straight and nine of 10 dating back to last season.
UNH is ranked within the top 100 teams in the country in a handful of categories. The Wildcats are 12th in scoring defense (55.7 ppg), 33rd in turnover margin (+4.6), 39th in 3-point field goal defense (.284), 41st in turnovers per game (12.1), 60th in field goal percentage defense (.388), 76th in winning percentage (.714) and 95th in personal fouls per game (17.9). Individually, Dane DiLiegro is 40th in free throw percentage (89.7) and 57th in rebounding (9.1 rpg), while Tyrone Conley is 44th in steals per game (2.3).
UNCONSTITUTIONAL OR JUST ROCK SOLID?
The Wildcats are 0-2 this season in games played in the state of Connecticut, while they are a perfect 5-0 in the rest of their contests.
TREY-MENDOUS STREAK FOR 'CATS
Heading into Thursday's contest UNH has recorded at least one 3-pointer in 560 consecutive games, a streak that spans 20 years. The last time the 'Cats did not tally a trey was in a 59-47 loss to Dartmouth College on Jan. 8, 1991, when they were 0-for-3 from behind the arc. The NCAA record is currently 780 games by UNLV, a streak that started Nov. 26, 1986 and is still active.
'CATS AMONG LEAGUE LEADERS
The Wildcats are currently leading the America East conference in points allowed per game (55.7), 3-point field goal shooting defense (.284) and turnovers per game (12.1), and are second in scoring margin (+4.4) and third in field goal percentage defense (.388). Individually, a handful of 'Cats are among the top 10 in a number of categories. Tyrone Conley is first in steals per game (2.3), eighth in 3-point field goals made per game (1.9) and ninth in both assists (2.4) and minutes per game (33.4). Dane DiLiegro is second in both rebounding (9.1) and free throw percentage (.897), sixth in steals (1.6) and 10th in field goal percentage (.476). Chandler Rhoads is seventh in assists (2.6). Ferg Myrick is eighth in blocks (1.0), ninth in scoring (14.3) and 10th in 3-point field goal percentage (.375).
NOVEMBER TO REMEMBER
The Wildcats closed out the month of November with a 4-2 record, their first ever four-win November and just their ninth winning November in the last 39 years.
NEARLY SOMETHING SPECIAL
The Wildcats came very close to knocking off the No. 7-ranked team in the country when they took UConn to the wire before falling 62-55 at Gampel Pavilion on Nov. 30. The Wildcats, who never trailed in the first half, led at the 14:08 mark in the second half and trailed by just one with 8:24 to play in the contest. The 62-point output was the smallest for the Huskies to that point in the season.
How epic would the win against UConn have been for the Wildcats? It would have been the program's first win ever against a ranked opponent, but what's more is that entering the contest, UConn was 112-4 against non-conference New England opponents during the Jim Calhoun era, in addition to owning a 134-18 record, including 65-4 against non-conference foes, all-time at Gampel Pavilion.
WALKING THE LINE
Against UConn on Nov. 30, Kemba Walker — the nation's leading scorer coming into the game (30.0 ppg) — netted 30 points, but picked up 14 of them at the charity stripe. While Walker was 7 of 16 from the floor, the rest of his team combined for 32 points on 12 of 34 shooting.
Despite converting three more field goals, including five more 3-pointers, holding a 39-38 edge in the rebounding department, including 18-12 on the offensive glass, and turning the ball over just 13 times, while forcing 12 turnovers, the Wildcats suffered a 62-55 loss at No. 7 UConn on Nov. 30. How? UConn sank 18 more free throws after being sent to the line 20 more times than UNH.
Prior to tipping off with UConn on Nov. 30, the Wildcats were shooting 24.8 percent (26-105) from behind then arc. The 'Cats then proceeded to shoot 50 percent (8-16) from deep against the Huskies.
Sophomore Ferg Myrick looked like he belonged, especially in the second half, when the Wildcats battled seventh-ranked UConn on Nov. 30. Myrick poured in a season-high 19 points, including 16 in the second half on 6 of 9 shooting, against the Big East power. Myrick also set career highs in 3-pointers made (3) and steals (4), while matching his career best with eight rebounds.
WHEN THE LIGHTS GO ON
Senior James Valladares scored a career-high 12 points — all in the first half — in the Wildcats' 62-55 loss at No. 7 UConn on Nov. 30. Valladares made five of his first six shots and netted UNH's final 10 points of the half.
MOVIN' ON UP
Senior Dane DiLiegro grabbed 10 boards at UConn on Nov. 30 to move past Matt Acres, who recorded 680 rebounds from 1994-98, and into sixth place on UNH's all-time list.
ANOTHER DOUBLE-DOUBLE FOR DOUBLE D
In the Wildcats' 70-66 win against Brown on Nov. 27, senior Dane DiLiegro posted his second double-double of the season (10th of his career), as well as his second game-winning basket of 2010-11. DiLiegro reached game and season highs in both points and rebounds with 23 points and 12 boards. DiLiegro, who gave UNH a 55-53 victory at Dartmouth on Nov. 16 with a layup with 1.5 seconds remaining, made the go-ahead bucket with 2.8 seconds on the clock.
STEALING THE SHOW
In the 70-66 win against Brown on Nov. 27, senior Tyrone Conley, who poured in a season-high 19 points, tallied a career-high five steals, including one off a Brown inbounds pass at midcourt with one second remaining that sealed the victory.
HOLDIN' IT DOWN
The Wildcats held their first four opponents of the season under 55 points for the first time since the 1947-48 season when they held their first six opponents under 55.
For the second time on the road this year, the Wildcats attempted to erase a 17-point deficit and used a big run to get back into the game at Sacred Heart on Nov. 23. Trailing 36-19 at the half, the 'Cats stormed out of the locker room on a 15-2 run that spanned the first 8:52 of the half. During that stretch, UNH forced 10 turnovers and caused Sacred Heart to shoot 1-for-5 (.200) from the floor. Overall, the Wildcats allowed just two second-half field goals as the Pioneers shot 2-for-14 (.143) and went 12:24 between those two makes. The 'Cats are outscoring their opponents 157-119 in the second half this season, including 31.4-23.8 per game.
The Wildcats won their first three games of the season for the first time since the 1971-72 campaign. The 'Cats also held all three oponents under 55 points, the first time they started 3-0 and allowed fewer than 55 points in each game since the 1931-32 season.
HERRION CLIMBING WINS LIST
By defeating Holy Cross, 55-52, Nov. 20, head coach Bill Herrion recorded his 61st victory at UNH and moved into fourth on the school's all-time wins list, passing Bill Olsen, who won 60 games in six seasons from 1960-66. Herrion now trails only Gerry Friel (188), William Cowell (119), and Henry Swasey (108) in the record books.
The Wildcats held their opponents to 62.4 ppg last year, the lowest since the 1950-51 season when they limited foes to 60.3 ppg. Records prior to 1960-61 were incomplete at the end of last season.
The Wildcats and senior guard Alvin Abreu were struck by some unfortunate luck in theit game at Dartmouth on Nov. 16. Abreu tore the ACL in his right knee during the second half and will miss the rest of the season.
WELL AHEAD OF SCHEDULE
With their 55-53 win at Darmouth on Nov. 16, the Wildcats recorded their first road win of the year in just their second game of the season and first on the road. Last season, the 'Cats were not victorious away from Durham until Jan. 21 at UMBC, which was their 17th game overall and 10th on the road.
In their 55-53 win at Dartmouth on Nov. 16, the Wildcats erased a 17-point, second-half deficit to grab the win. It was the team's largest comeback since Jan. 18, 2007 when it demolished a 15-point deficit at Binghamon to record a 75-72 victory. Trailing 40-23 with 15:11 to play in the second half, the Wildcats locked down the Big Green and ripped off a 20-4 run to whittle the deficit to one with 7:19 remaining. During the 8:13 span, which included a 7:13 stretch that featured a 14-0 run, the UNH defense forced Dartmouth to shoot 2-for-12 from the floor and forced four turnovers.
Senior Dane DiLiegro posted the ninth double-double of his career and first of 2010-11 with 13 points and 10 rebounds in the Wildcats' 55-53 win at Dartmouth on Nov. 16. DiLiegro also had a put-back basket with 1.5 seconds remaining in regulation to give his team the win.
HOME, SWEET HOME
With their 79-47 victory against Lesley on Nov. 13, the Wildcats win their fourth straight home opener and start the season at Lundholm Gymnasium 1-0.
The Wildcats, who were second in the league last season with 62.4 points allowed per game - a mark that was the program's lowest since the 1950-51 season, once again set the tone for the season on the defensive end of the floor in their opener versus Lesley on Nov. 13. The 'Cats held the Lynx to 37.3 percent (19-51) shooting, including 12.5 percent (1-8) from deep, and forced 25 turnovers. During a 14-0 run early in the second half, UNH caused five turnovers and forced Lesley to shoot 0-for-5 from the field.
BACK IN THE SADDLE AGAIN
Coming off a 2009-10 campaign which saw him earn America East All-Conference Second Team honors after bumping his scoring average to 14.4 ppg, Alvin Abreu kicked off the season with a 20-point performance against Lesley on Nov. 13. Abreu was 5-for-11 from the field, including 2 of 5 from deep, and went a perfect 8-for-8 from the line.
PICKING UP WHERE HE LEFT OFF
After a 2009-10 season in which he earned America East All-Rookie Team honors and led the team in points per minute (0.53) after playing well down the stretch, Ferg Myrick made just his second career start against Lesley on Nov. 13 and dropped 18 points on 8 of 14 shooting to go along with seven rebounds, including five on the offensive end.
FILLIN' IT UP
In his first collegiate game, DeAndray Buckley filled the stat line in a solid 15 minutes. Buckley tallied three points, seven rebounds, two assists, a pair of blocks and a steal.
HERRION VS. WILDCATS' 2010-11 OPPONENTS
Coming into the season, Bill Herrion owns a 112-78 (.589) record against the Wildcats' possible 2010-11 opponents.
CONFERENCE COACHING CONQUESTS
Head coach Bill Herrion is currently tops among active coaches and third overall in America East regular season conference victories. Herrion's 137 conference wins are far and away better than the league's other eight coaches, with Albany's Will Brown the next closest with 64. Overall, Herrion sits behind only former Boston University head coach Dennis Wolff (152) and long-time Vermont head man Tom Brennan (147).
DUSTING OFF THE RECORD BOOKS
After winning 13 games last year, the Wildcats have now posted four double-digit win seasons in a five-year span for the first time since 1969-70 to 1973-74. They have also put together a streak of seven straight nine-plus win seasons for the first time since 1918-19 to 1926-27.
MORE HOME COOKIN'
With an average of 1,126 fans visiting Lundholm Gymnasium each game last season, it was the largest average attendance since it reached 1,787 during the 1995-96 season. Paired with the 1,002 average attendance of 2008-09, it was the first time the average attendance has reached 1,000 in back-to-back seasons since the 1994-95 and 1995-96 seasons. The 14,642 total fans to attend games at Lundholm last year also marked the largest total attendance since 21,442 came through the doors in 1995-96. With 13,029 in attendance in 2008-09, it was the first time in consecutive years that the total attendance has reached 13,000 since 1994-95 and 1995-96.
HOOPS FOR HOPE
The University of New Hampshire's Wildcat Sports Properties and Holy Rosary Credit Union (HRCU) have teamed up to create a community-inspired basketball promotion to benefit the St. Charles Children's Home with a donation of $1 for every point scored by the UNH men's basketball team throughout the season.
"We're proud to partner with UNH's Wildcat Sports to provide support for St. Charles Children's Home in Rochester. Hoops for Hope is our way of showing our commitment to sports, education and the children of the communities we serve," said Brian Hughes, President and CEO of HRCU.
After each game, the points scored will be tallied and recorded on a "Hoops for Hope" banner housed in Lundholm Gymnasium. So far this season, $421 has been donated.
DEMPSEY ON COLLEGE CHALKTALK
Associate Head Coach Ken Dempsey will be blogging at various points of the season on College Chalktalk. To follow along with Dempsey's entries, visit www.CollegeChalkTalk.com/coachesDiary/new_hampshire.
UNH HOOPS ON WILDCATS.TV
UNH and Pack Network have once again partnered to provide online video streaming of UNH's seven ticketed sports for the upcoming 2009-10 season with UNHwildcats.Tv. Wildcat fans are encouraged to buy the "Wildcat All-Access Pass" which is an annual subscription for $89.95 that provides all the live coverage of UNH home athletic events. Fans can also purchase home events on a per game basis of $7.95.
WILDCAT BASKETBALL ON THE AIR
In the summer of 1999, the University of New Hampshire Athletic Department formed the "UNH Sports Network" — the largest network ever to broadcast UNH sporting events. Wildcats Sports Properties has added WGIN-AM 930 (Rochester) and WQSO-FM 96.7 (Portsmouth) as flagship stations on the Wildcat Sports Network, joining WGIR-AM 610 (Manchester), which was added in 2008. All three stations are part of the Clear Channel family and this change will go into effect at the beginning of the 2009-10 season. These three aforementioned stations – along with WUVR-AM 1490 (Lebanon), WNTK-FM 99.7 (New London) and WCNL-AM 1010 (Newport) – will carry the following: all UNH football & men's hockey broadcasts and weekly coaches' shows, a select number of men's basketball, women's basketball, and women's hockey broadcasts, as well as "Wildcat Sports Today", a three-minute daily update concerning UNH athletics. The games can also be heard on the internet at www.UNHWildcats.com, through a service from Stretch Internet. Stretch has also partnered with UNH to develop a podcast page for UNH fans to listen to archived broadcasts. Veteran play-by-play man Jim Jeannotte will return for his 30th year broadcasting UNH men's basketball. Jeannotte will be joined by color analyst Mike Murphy, who enters his 11th season calling Wildcat men's hoop.
WILDCAT BASKETBALL STREAMING LIVE
UNHWildcats.com, via Stretch Internet Broadcast, will carry 10 UNH men's basketball home games, as well as a pair of road contests this season. If you cannot attend Wildcat basketball, you can still tune into the game from anywhere you can gain access to the internet. Fans can get to the UNH men's basketball broadcast site by going to the men's basketball schedule page at www.UNHWildcats.com.