DURHAM, N.H. - Somersworth (N.H) native Melissa Heon scored a career-high 24 points, including four three-pointers, to lead the University of Maine to a 68-65 America East women's basketball victory over the University of New Hampshire Tuesday night at Lundholm Gymnasium.
With the win, the Black Bears improved to 15-10 overall (8-6 America East) and leapfrogged the Wildcats (13-11, 7-6 America East) in the conference standings. Heon was also a perfect 10-for-10 from the free throw line for Maine, which shot 92 percent (23-25) from the charity stripe compared to UNH's 10-21 (.476) effort. Maren Matthias (Guilford, Conn.) led UNH with a team-high 12 points and five rebounds while Heather Ernest had 17 points and nine boards for the Black Bears.
With the score tied at 52-52, Anna Matthias (Guilford, Conn.) and Geneva Livingston (Red Bank, N.J.) hit back-to-back three-pointers to stake UNH to a 58-52 lead with 6:25 remaining. Maine responded with a 7-0 run, capped by Eva Moldre's bucket, to take a one-point lead (59-58) with 4:07 left. The 'Cats answered with consecutive baskets by Heidi Plencner (Hampton, N.H.) and Kiki Proctor (Harrisburg, Pa.) to grab a 63-59 advantage with 3:02 to go, but did score again until Colleen Mullen's (Chelmsford, Mass.) layup with seven seconds remaining made it 66-65 in favor of Maine. After two free throws from Heon, the Wildcats had a chance to tie, but Mullen was unable to get a shot off as time expired. The Black Bears were clutch down the stretch, converting on 7 of 8 opportunities from the line in the game's final 2:24.
Livingston and Anna Matthias each finished with 10 points for UNH. Plencner finished with six points, moving her past former Wildcat player and coach Kathy Sanborn and into 10th place on UNH's all-time scoring list. The 5-8 senior guard and Winnacunnett (Hampton, N.H.) High grad now has 932 points in her UNH career.
The Wildcats return to action Saturday (2/23) when they travel to Binghamton .