January 9, 2010

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL DROPS 72-45 DECISION TO HARTFORD

DURHAM, N.H. - Candace Williams (Norfolk, Mass.) and Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) scored 13 and 10 points, respectively, but the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team fell to the University of Hartford, 72-45, on Saturday afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium.

With the win, the Hawks improve to 12-3 on the season and 3-0 in America East play. As for the Wildcats, they fall to 5-10 on the year and 0-3 in conference action.

In addition to her 13 points, Williams pulled in two rebounds, on her way to being named America East Player of the Game for UNH. Erica Beverly took home Player of the Game honors for Hartford, finishing the afternoon with a game-high 17 points, four rebounds, four assists and two steals.

After being down by 23 points at the half, the Wildcats drew first blood in the second frame, as Amy Simpson (Waterford, Conn.) kicked off play with a 3-pointer, cutting the score to 34-14 with 19:31 remaining.

Hartford was quick to respond, stringing off a 9-2 scoring stretch that lasted 3:18, as Beverly spawned the run, knocking down a jumper at 19:10. Diana Delva delivered the final basket of the stretch, burying a layup, pushing Hartford's lead to 27, with the score 43-16.

It was Simpson who would once again answer the call for the ‘Cats, as she nailed a jumper to end the run, sparking a 12-6 scoring stretch for New Hampshire.

Moments later, Jenna Peterson would knock down a jumper and Daphne Elliott would add a 3-pointer, giving the Hawks their largest lead of the afternoon, holding a 48-18 advantage at 14:23.

However, the Wildcats would pick up the pace, scoring 10 points in the next 2:30 of play, while only allowing one point by the Hawks. Williams would polish off the stretch, draining the second of two 3-pointers on the afternoon.

After nearly a minute of scoreless action, Beverly would knock down a jumper at 11:02 to push Hartford's lead to 23. Following the change of possession, Beliveau answered back with a trifecta, setting the score at 51-31 with 10:32 to play.

That would be as close as the Wildcats would get to making a comeback, as Hartford responded with 10 unanswered points, capping off the game with a 21-14 run to preserve the victory.

The Hawks outscored the Wildcats 34 to 11 in the first half of play, as Hartford shot 46.2 percent and UNH shot 16.7 percent in the stanza.

For the game, Hartford outshot UNH 53.2 to 29.5 percent from the floor, including a second half in which the Hawks posted a .619 shooting clip.

Simpson added eight points, three assists and two steals for UNH. Jill McDonald (Middlebury, Vt.) chipped in with four points and three rebounds.

For Hartford, Peterson finished with 11 points, one rebound and one assist. Jackie Smith tallied five points, six assists, five rebounds and three steals.

The Wildcats return to action on Tuesday, Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. when they take on rival Maine at Lundholm Gymnasium.

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