DURHAM, N.H. – Senior Denise Beliveau (Framingham, Mass.), junior Cari Reed (Oswego, N.Y.) and sophomore Kelsey Hogan (Nashua, N.H.) each scored in double-figures, but the University of New Hampshire women's basketball team fell to Holy Cross, 61-50, Saturday afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium.
With the loss, the Wildcats dip to 3-3 on the season, while the Crusaders improve to 4-4 overall.
Beliveau, who was chosen as the America East Player of the Game, scored a team-high 15 points, becoming the 16th player in program history to score 1,000 career points. She entered the contest at 999 and achieved the feat with her first basket of the game on a layup at the 18:18 mark of the first half. The senior shot 7-of-13 from the floor, finishing with eight rebounds and five steals.
Reed netted 12 points in the contest, including a pair of 3-pointers, while Hogan finished with 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting and added four assists.
Junior Amy Lepley paced the Crusaders with a game-high 20 points, while sophomore Brisje Malone and freshman Emily Parker also posted double-figures with 15 and 10, respectively.
The teams traded points in the opening five minutes of action before Parker netted back-to-back baskets to push the Crusaders on top, 9-4 with 13:35 remaining. After a pair of free throws by Hogan pulled the home side within three, the Crusaders answered back just over two minutes later with a couple of foul shots to regain the five-point advantage.
Holy Cross maintained a five-point lead over the next five minutes, but a pair of Reed free throws and a layup by Beliveau pulled the Wildcats within one, 20-19, with 15:29 to play in the first half. The two teams then alternated a trio of 3-pointers, with the Crusaders coming out of the stretch on top, 26-22, paving the way for a 28-24 advantage at halftime.
New Hampshire raced out to a 9-4 run to start the first half, capped off by consecutive layups by Beliveau to give the Wildcats a 33-32 lead with 16:44 to play. After Holy Cross took back the lead on a layup by Meredith Ward, UNH reeled off a 10-3 stretch for the 43-37 lead at the 11:02 mark.
Holy Cross fought back with a 12-0 run to regain the lead, 49-43, until Hogan stepped back and drilled a 3-pointer to snap the stretch and pull the Wildcats within three with 7:02 remaining.
The Crusaders ended the half on a 12-4 run, hitting nine free throws in the process, to hold on for the victory.
The Wildcats return to action on Tuesday, Dec. 6 when they play host to Harvard at 7 p.m.