PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Sophomore Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) netted a game-high 17 points and senior Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.) recorded a double-double to lead the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team past Brown University, 62-57, Friday evening at the Pizzitola Sports Center in the season opener for both teams.
Hogan shot 5-for-11 from the field, including four 3-pointers and also added nine rebounds, while Beliveau totaled 10 points and a game-high 13 rebounds for the double-double. Senior Kelley Flynn (Hopkinton, N.H.) added eight points and three blocks, while freshman Ariel Gaston (Toledo, Ohio) finished with six points, 10 boards, five assists and three steals for the all-around game.
Senior Hannah Passafuime and junior Sheila Dixon paced the Bears with 17 points apiece.
The Wildcats raced out to an early lead with a 7-0 run to start the contest, highlighted by a pair of post lay-ins by Flynn and a trey by sophomore Sarah-Marie Frankenberger (Gross Gerau, Germany) at the top of the arc. The Bears answered with back-to-back baskets, but junior Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) halted any hope of a home side run with a corner jumper, putting the 'Cats on top, 9-4.
After nearly four minutes of scoreless action, a Dixon lay-up pulled the Bears within three points, but the Wildcats answered with consecutive jumpers from freshman Kaylee Kilpatrick (St. John, New Brunswick) and Beliveau for the seven-point lead at the 8:51 mark. From there, the Bears went on an 8-2 run to pull within two, but Hogan followed a free throw with a 3-pointer to push the lead back up to six with 4:46 remaining.
After the Bears trimmed the deficit to four, Hogan drilled another trey with 11 seconds remaining but the home side answered right back with a three of their own as UNH held on for the 26-22 advantage at halftime.
The Wildcats opened the second half with a 7-2 run, capped off by another Hogan 3-pointer, to stretch the UNH lead to 33-24 with 16:12 to play. After three quick points by the Bears, the Wildcats silenced the home team with a 15-3 run as Reed 3-pointer pushed UNH on top, 48-30, at the 10:00 mark.
Brown would fight back, however, using a 19-4 run over 7:45 to pull within three at 52-49 with just over three minutes left in regulation. The UNH defense would step up from there as Hogan took a timely charge in the lane and Flynn came up with a crucial block, allowing the Wildcats to hit all the necessary free throws and hang on for the 62-57 victory.
As a team, the Wildcats shot at a 37.3 percent clip, including 40 percent from beyond the arc, and limited the Bears to 5-of-27 on 3-point attempts.
The Wildcats return to action of Wednesday, Nov. 16 when they play host to Seton Hall in the home-opener at 7 p.m.