January 31, 2011

Men’s Basketball Drops 63-49 Decision to Vermont

BURLINGTON, Vt. – Senior Tyrone Conley (Burlington, Vt.) scored 12 points and sophomore Chandler Rhoads (Berryville, Va.) added 11, but the University of New Hampshire men's basketball team fell to the University of Vermont, 63-49, in America East action Monday evening at Patrick Gymnasium.

The Wildcats fall to 9-13 on the season, including 3-7 in America East play, while the Catamounts win their fifth straight to improve to 17-5 overall and 8-2 in the conference.

Conley was 4-for-11 from the field and tallied three rebounds, an assist and a block, while playing 29 minutes due to early foul trouble. Rhoads was 4-for-12 from the floor, including 2-for-4 from behind the arc, and added four boards, an assist and a steal in 35 minutes. Freshman Jordon Bronner (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) earned America East Player of the Game honors with seven points on 3 of 9 shooting to go along with five assists, which matched his career high, and four rebounds.

Joey Accaoui led Vermont with 15 points on 7 of 10 shooting to earn America East Player of the Game honors.

Vermont scored the first four points of the game and still led 9-5 when back-to-back baskets by senior Dane DiLiegro (Lexington, Mass.) knotted the game at nine with 13:23 to play in the opening half. The Wildcats grabbed their first lead of the night when senior James Valladares (Kaufman, Texas) pulled in an offensive rebound and put it back to make it 12-11 with just under 12 minutes to play.

Consecutive jumpers from Conley and Rhoads gave the Wildcats their largest lead of the half, 18-15, with 9:48 remaining, but a Brian Voelkel 3-pointer from the left wing knotted things up just 13 seconds later. The Catamounts had opened up a 31-26 lead when Rhoads knocked down a deep straightaway 3 with the shot clock winding down to slice the deficit to two with just 1:23 on the clock. Evan Fjeld made 1 of 2 at the line and then an Accaoui jumper with 3.6 seconds left closed the first-half scoring with Vermont on top, 34-29.

The Wildcats matched a season high with seven different players scoring in the opening half. Rhoads and DiLiegro led the way with eight and seven points, respectively.

Vermont opened the second half with jumpers from Fjeld and Glass to stretch the lead to nine just 2:35 in. After a basket by junior Brian Benson (Rochester, N.Y.), layups by Voelkel and Luke Apfeld made it 42-31 with 14:20 remaining. With the deficit still 11 at 44-33, a three-point play by Bronner and another DiLiegro basket inside sliced it to six. Conley then drilled a 3 following a Fjeld bucket to bring the Wildcats to within five at 46-41 with 11:23 to play. Another Conley trey at the 8:17 mark cut it to four at 50-46, and a Rhoads trifecta at 7:28 made it a three-point game at 52-49. That is as close as UNH would come, however, as Vermont went on an 11-0 run, with five points from Accaoui, to close the scoring.

DiLiegro posted nine points and five rebounds, while Benson recorded four points, a game-high 11 boards, a block and a steal.

Vermont outshot UNH, 49 percent (24-49) to 34 percent (19-56), from the field. The Wildcats outrebounded the Catamounts, 35-31, and turned the ball over 12 times, while UVM only committed eight turnovers.

With 198 career 3-pointers, Conley moved past Tommy MacDonald (197) for third place on UNH's all-time 3-pointers made list. Conley also took over the top spot in 3-pointers attempted (616) as he passed MacDonald (615).

The Wildcats return to action Wednesday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m. when they play host to the University at Albany at Lundholm Gymnasium. For tickets, click HERE or call (603) 862-4000, x 5.

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