DURHAM, N.H. - Maren Matthias (Guilford, Conn.) registered 20 points, including the game-winning layup with 22 seconds to go, and eight rebounds to lead the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team to a 62-61 win over the NWBL Elite Thursday night at Lundholm Gymnasium. The game was the final tuneup for the women's basketball team before it opens the 2003-04 season Tuesday, November 25 by hosting St. Bonaventure at 7:00 pm.
Matthias, an America East Preseason All-Conference selection, was 9-16 from the floor and also recorded three blocked shots and three steals. Salée-Marie Johnson (Brampton, Ontario) had 10 points, while Danielle Clark (Corinna, Maine) recorded seven points, 10 rebounds and five assists. Ebony Woods (Philadelphia, Pa.) had nine points.
UNH led by seven, 58-51, with just under four minutes to play when Emily Hardy (Westbrook, Conn.) drained a three-pointer. The NWBL Elite, a team made up of former college standouts, stormed back with a 7-0 run capped by a three-pointer by Rhonda Jo Miller with 2:39 remaining to knot the game at 58.
The 'Cats regained control out of a timeout when Hardy drained a jumper on the left baseline to take a 60-58 lead, but with 1:26 to go Emily Nichols drained a trifecta from the right corner as the Elite regained the lead at 61-60. After the teams traded turnovers, Matthias would be fouled with 30 seconds left, resetting the shot clock for UNH. On the ensuing possession, a pass by Clark found Matthias on the right block and she converted a layup off a spin move as New Hampshire retook the lead.
Whitney Edwards (Mount Vernon, N.Y.) came up with a steal on NWBL's next possession and would be fouled on an inbounds. She missed the free throw giving NWBL one last chance. A Nichols three attempt from the right corner fell short as the buzzer sounded.
UNH led by as many as six in the first half after a Kate Dillon (Overland Park, Kanssas) basket at the 11:48 mark. NWBL took a 22-20 lead with 4:27 left on an Angie Pezzetta basket but UNH went on a 7-0 run capped by a Woods trey to make it 27-22. UNH led 32-28 at halftime.
Miller, a former Division III All-American at Gallaudet, finished with 15 points and 16 rebounds for NWBL Elite. Nichols (Stonehill) finished with 12 points while Gail Strumpf (Fairfield) added 11 for the guests.