Box Score

– Gia Sanders and Britney McGee posted 16 and 15 points, respectively to lead the University at Albany past the University of New Hampshire women’s basketball team, 62-52, in its America East season opener Saturday afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium.

Freshman forward Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) was selected as the Wildcats’ America East Player of the Game as she led the team in scoring with 10 points off the bench. She also had three steals in the game for the Wildcats. Sophomore forward Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) had a game-high 11 rebounds for New Hampshire, leading the Wildcats, who outrebounded Albany, 43-37.

The visitors held the lead for much of the first half thanks to an 11-point first-half effort by McGee, but the Wildcats battled back going on a 9-0 run to take the lead (24-19) with 4:26 to play. The run included back-to-back 3-pointers by senior guard Ashley Cerniglia (Pittsford, N.Y.). The Great Danes battled back to tie the score 26-26 at halftime.

It was a back-and-forth affair early on in the second half, but the Wildcats gained control and led by as many as six points (41-35) with 8:55 left to play. Albany battled back to tie the game, 45-45, with 7:12 remaining. The Great Danes continued to score as the ‘Cats got cold, going on an 11-2 run to take a 10-point lead with 2:32 left to play. Williams scored the Wildcats’ final five points, including an old fashion three-point play with 33 seconds remaining, but a 12-point deficit was too much to overcome for the ‘Cats. Williams hit all five free-throw attempts taken, as the team went a perfect 10-for-10 from the charity stripe. The Wildcats hit just two shots from the field in the final eight minutes of action.

Both teams struggled to hold onto the ball as they combined for 47 turnovers in the game.

The Wildcats travel to Dartmouth on Wednesday, Jan. 9. The Granite State rival game is set to tip off at 7 p.m.
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