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The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team enters the Brown Basketball Classic with a 3-2 overall record and opens the tournament Dec. 1 (4 p.m.) against Quinnipiac University (4-0) at Pizzitola Sports Center. The Wildcats will play either Brown University or Rider University on Dec. 2.
UNH has a 1-4 lifetime record against Quinnipiac. The Bobcats won the most recent meeting (62-61), which was also at a neutral site as part of a tournament – the Hawk Classic at St. Joseph's (Philadelphia) on Dec. 29, 2010. Just one week earlier, however, the teams tipped off at UNH's Lundholm Gym and the Wildcats prevailed 75-63.
This series began December 2003, when New Hampshire traveled to Quinnipiac and returned home with an 82-76 loss. The following November, the Bobcats made the trek to Durham and won 68-65. QU was a 68-54 victor in a Nov. 29, 2009 matchup.
The State Of New Hampshire
New Hampshire enters the Brown Basketball Classic with a 3-2 overall record following Wednesday night's 63-44 loss at Harvard University. Since opening the season 2-0, the Wildcats have alternated wins and losses.
Including this weekend's tournament games, UNH will play six of its first seven games away from home. The 'Cats went 2-2 on the road in November.
This is New Hampshire's second appearance in the Brown Basketball Classic. The Wildcats also competed in 2003, when they lost to Brown (77-62) and Liberty (87-64).
With a 68-65 win at Holy Cross on Nov. 17, UNH started 2-0 for the first time since the 2005-06 season. Between that season and this, UNH won season openers three times (2007-08, 2009-10, 2011-12) but lost the following game.
UNH, under the direction of third-year head coach Maureen Magarity, returns 11 letterwinners, including three starters, from last year's team that recorded 16 victories and advanced to the WBI tournament. At 16-14 overall, it was the Wildcats' first winning season since 2006 and the highest single-season victory total since 2002. And at 9-7 in America East, the fourth-place finish in the league standings marked the best since 2005.
Statistically, UNH returns three of its top four scorers, two of its top three rebounders, the top two 3-point shooters, two of the top four assist leaders and a player who started all 30 games a year ago.
In the past 10 seasons, New Hampshire has competed in 10 regular-season tournaments – two in 2005-06 and none in 2009-10. UNH has a 7-13 overall record with a breakdown of 2-8 on opening day and 5-5 on Day 2. Both of the Wildcats' opening-day wins were in the 2005-06 season, which means they have started a tourney 0-1 each of the last five times – the last four have been to the host school, however, and Saturday's matchup is against a neutral-site foe (Quinnipiac).
What just happened
Cari Reed recorded team highs in points (10), rebounds (six) and assists (four) as UNH was upended 63-44 by Harvard University in Wednesday night's non-conference game at Lavietes Basketball Pavilion.
Morgan Frame scored the first two baskets of the game, but Harvard responded with a 9-0 run. The Wildcats answered with an 8-3 spurt to regain the lead, 12-11, but never led again.
The Crimson opened the second half with consecutive 3-pointers to extend a 25-19 halftime lead to 12 points and the lead remained double digits the rest of the way.
UNH shot a season-low 34.0% (17 of 50) from the floor.
What Happens Next
Following this weekend's action at the Brown Basketball Classic, UNH plays host to intrastate rival Dartmouth College as part of a women's & men's doubleheader Dec. 5 at Lundholm Gym. The women open the set with a 5:30 p.m. tipoff. UNH then travels to play Central Connecticut State (Dec. 9) before taking a brief break for final exams.
With or Without You
Junior point guard and captain Kelsey Hogan was sidelined for the consecutive games against Cornell University and Harvard University. In the three games with Hogan, UNH averaged 61.3 points per game and shot 44.2% from the floor. In the other two games with Hogan on the bench, the Wildcats averaged 51.5 ppg and shot 36.9%.
The Wildcats' floor general is expected to return to the lineup this weekend at the Brown Basketball Classic.
New Hampshire Notables
The 44 points scored at Harvard marked the team's lowest total in the 27-game series history vs. the Crimson. The previous low of 45 occurred Nov. 28, 2000.
UNH finished with 22 assists on 29 field goals in the 68-65 victory at Holy Cross, and that assist total marked the highest by the Wildcats since Jan. 29, 2003, when New Hampshire tallied 23 assists in a 76-70 loss at Vermont; the last time the 'Cats recorded 20+ assists was Jan. 10, 2009 at UMBC.
In the two subsequent games following that 22-assist effort at Holy Cross, UNH had a combined 21 assists.
In the Nov. 20 game at Boston College, the Wildcats shot 59.1% from the floor in the first half and carried that hot shooting touch early into the second half when they shot 50% (4-8) en route to building a 43-37 lead. In the last 16 minutes, however, UNH shot 5 of 21 (23.8%) from the floor as BC rallied to the 64-59 victory.
Four UNH Wildcats scored in double digits at Holy Cross. That quartet – Morgan Frame, Kelsey Hogan, Kaylee Kilpatrick and Cari Reed – accounted for 59 of the team's 68 points and shot a combined 25-for-42 (59.5%) from the floor, including 5 of 12 (41.7%) from 3-point range; they also went 4-for-4 from the foul line to account for all of the team's free throw attempts.
UNH went 0-for-7 from 3-point range in the Nov. 14 season opener at Yale. The last time the 'Cats did not make a 3-point field goal was Feb. 25, 2009, when they missed all 15 shots from beyond the arc against Stony Brook University at Lundholm Gym (50-49 win).
Senior forward Morgan Frame had scored in double digits each of the first four games of the season but was held to nine points by Harvard University on Nov. 28.
Senior guard Cari Reed entered the Harvard game 9-for-9 from the foul line. She made her initial three attempts vs. the Crimson, but her next attempt rolled off the rim; Reed has made 12 of 13 free throw attempts overall this season.
Senior guard Lauren Wells recorded a career-high two blocks at Harvard. She had tallied one block in a game 13 times.
Freshman guard Elizabeth Belanger recorded her first career double-double with 11 points and a team-high 11 rebounds Nov. 25 against Cornell. Both totals are personal bests.
Senior guard Jilliane Friel, who missed the first three games of the season, matched her career high of four assists in 15 minutes of action off the bench vs. Cornell.
Sophomore forward Stephanie Spoto matched her personal best of four points at Harvard; she had tallied two points each of the first four games of the season. One game earlier against Cornell University, Spoto recorded a personal-best four rebounds.
In two of five games this season, neither team has led by more than six points and each of the first four games were decided by six points or less.
In the opener at Yale, the Bulldogs' largest lead was four points and the 'Cats led by no more than six; that was also the final margin (57-51).
Then against Holy Cross, the Crusaders led by as many as 11 points and UNH by as many as five en route to a three-point victory, 68-65.
Last Tuesday at Boston College, the Wildcats held the largest lead of six points; BC's greatest margin was five points in the five-point win.
Most recently versus Cornell, the 'Cats led by 10 points three times and faced a deficit as large as five in a three-point victory.
Senior shooting guard Cari Reed has been a clutch performer for the 'Cats this season. In the opener at Yale, Reed pulled down a defensive rebound with nine seconds remaining and secured the 57-51 victory by hitting both foul shots with five seconds to play. Then at Holy Cross on Nov. 17, Reed lifted UNH to a 68-65 victory by hitting a 3-pointer with three seconds on the clock. Most recently against Cornell, she hit a pair of free throws with nine seconds remaining to extend UNH's lead to three points and the final margin of 59-56.
Through five games this season, Reed is averaging a team-best 8.4 rebounds per game and she is second in scoring (13.0 ppg), assists (11) free throws made (12) and attempted (13), and minutes (35.0 per game). She is atop the leaderboard in 3-pointers (nine).
Reed recorded her second career double-double with 18 points and 12 rebounds at Holy Cross (Nov. 17). Both totals led all players and the 12 rebounds matched her personal best. She nearly tallied a double-double in two other games with eight points, 11 rebounds at Yale and 12 points, eight rebounds at Boston College.
Most recently, Reed led the'Cats in points (10), rebounds (six) and assists (four) at Harvard.
Reed played in 28 of 30 games with 22 starts a year ago, when the 6-footer led the team in 3-point field goals made (44) and attempted (123). She also ranked second among all 'Cats in 3-point field goal percentage (.358) and blocks.
The sharpshooter rewrote the UNH record book with eight 3-pointers in a game against Harvard at Lundholm Gym on Dec. 6, 2011; she had shared the previous benchmark of six 3-pointers in a game with six others. Reed finished that game vs. Harvard with a career-high 32 points.
In other statistics, Reed ranked fourth in scoring average (7.8 ppg), field goal percentage (.383) and minutes (25.8 per game).
Hitting the boards
UNH recorded the rebound advantage each of its first four games against Yale (44-36), Holy Cross (31-24), Boston College (36-31) and Cornell (40-39), but then Harvard hit the glass for a decisive 43-27 edge against the Wildcats.
Framework For Success
Senior forward Morgan Frame was selected to the America East Preseason All-Conference Team at the league's Media Day in late October.
Through five games, Frame leads the team in field goals made (25), free throws made (14) and attempted (21), and steals (five). She ranks second in field goals attempted (51) and field goal percentage (49.0%) as well as rebounding (5.2 per game).
Frame has proven capable of taking control of games. With UNH trailing by 10 points (56-46) with eight minutes remaining at Holy Cross, Frame scored nine consecutive points and 11 overall during the Wildcats' 15-0 run; she also had two steals during that stretch.
In the next game at Boston College, Frame scored eight consecutive UNH points in the latter part of the first half as the 'Cats and Eagles exchanged baskets.
In her first year as a UNH Wildcat in 2012, Morgan Frame led the team in scoring (16.0 points per game) and ranked second in rebounds (7.5 per game) to garner America East All-Conference Second Team recognition. She would have led the league in scoring and ranked No. 8 in rebounding if she met the minimum requirement of 75% games played (Frame played in 22 of 30 games – 73.3%).
Frame led the team in field goal percentage (.443), and she also attempted the most free throws despite missing eight games (due to NCAA transfer regulations).
The 6-foot-1 forward, a two-time America East Player of the Week honoree who was named UNH's Player of the Game five times, ranked second among Wildcats in field goals attempted and made as well as made free throws.
Frame was UNH's top scorer 12 times (in 22 games) and the top rebounder nine times; she led the squad in both statistics seven times and tallied seven double-doubles, including a 35-point, 12-rebound effort against Wagner in just her second game as a Wildcat. The 35 points marked the highest single-game output by any America East player last year.
Get Outta Here
New Hampshire recorded just one blocked shot through three games and then recorded two in the Nov. 25 home opener against Cornell University. Sophomore forward Kaylee Kilpatrick accounted for all three blocks to that point, and then senior guard Lauren Wells tallied two blocks at Harvard (Nov. 28).
Harvard swatted away five UNH shots to increase the opposition's block total to seven; Boston College recorded the other two blocks.
Captain of the 'Cats
Junior guard Kelsey Hogan is captain of the 2012-13 UNH Wildcats; last year, she was a co-captain alongside Denise Beliveau and started all 30 games. Hogan is a mulitple threat in the backcourt – as the quarterback of the offense, she is strong on the dribble and an excellent passer; she is also an accurate jumpshooter who led not only the team but the America East conference in 3-point field goal percentage (.446; 41-for-92) a year ago.
Through five games this season, Hogan leads the team in scoring average (13. ppg), assists (5.0 per game) and minutes per game (35.7 mpg). In other stats, she ranks third in field goal percentage (48.3%) and fourth in rebounding (3.7 rpg). Hogan, who missed the past two games, is also perfect from the foul line (9-for-9).
Hogan matched her career high of nine assists Nov. 17 at Holy Cross. She established that personal benchmark Jan. 22, 2012 vs. Binghamton University. In the opener at Yale, Hogan made all eight free throw attempts; the eight foul shots was a career high.
In 2011-12, Hogan also led New Hampshire in assists, ranked second in both 3-point field goals made and minutes (33.9 mpg) as well as third in scoring(10.2 ppg), field goals made and attempted, field goal percentage (.386) and free throws made and attempted.
With those statistics, Hogan's other conference rankings included fifth in FT percentage (.896), seventh in minutes, 11th in both scoring and assists and 12th in field goal percentage.
Other stats illustrate Hogan is a multi-dimensional overall player. In addition to her offensive prowess, she also tied for second on the squad in steals and was third in rebounding (3.8 rpg).
The Wildcats did not attempt a first-half free throw Wednesday night at Harvard University. The 'Cats made 8 of 12 foul shots in the second half.
UNH attempted just four free throws – and made all four – in the 68-65 victory at Holy Cross (Nov. 17). It marked the lowest number of free throw attempts since Feb. 23, 2011, when UNH was 3 of 4 at the foul line; it was the lowest total of free throws made since the 'Cats went 4-for-9 from the foul line Dec. 3, 2011 against Holy Cross; they were 3-10 vs. Seton Hall on Nov. 16, 2011.
UNH recorded season highs in both free throws made (15) and attempted (19) in the Nov. 14 season opener at Yale.
Going Back To The Wells Again
Another player who returns with starting experience is senior guard Lauren Wells, who utilizes her quickness and athleticism to drive past defenders – and be a disruptive force at the other end of the court as a defender – but she can also hit the mid-range jumper.
Wells missed the entire 2012 season due to injury, but she started 21 of 29 games in 2011 as a junior and was in the starting lineup all 31 games in '10. In her junior season, Wells ranked third on the team in steals, fourth in assists and fifth in scoring; she also led the team in free throw percentage and ranked ninth in America East in 3-point field goal percentage.
Wells, who started each of the first two games of the 2012-13 season, came off the bench vs. Cornell to score a season-high nine points in 24 minutes on 3-for-6 shooting from the floor and 2 of 2 from the foul line. Wells also came off the bench at Harvard and tallied four points, five rebounds and two blocks in 24 minutes. She is averaging 3.6 points and 22.8 minutes per game.
This Date In History
In the 37-year history of UNH varsity women's basketball, the Wildcats have a 6-6 record, including 0-1 in neutral-site games, on Dec. 1. The neutral-site game was an 82-47 loss to Duke University at the Dial Classic (Durham, N.C.) in 1989. Most recently, the 'Cats prevailed 75-70 at home against Colgate University.
On Dec. 2, UNH has a 3-6 overall recordwith an 0-3 mark in neutral-site games and 1-3 on the road.
Return to Action
Senior shooting guard Jilliane Friel, who was sidelined the opening two weeks of the season due to injury, made her 2012-13 season debut in the Nov. 25 home opener vs. Cornell, and she was even pressed into the role of point guard due to injury and foul trouble.
In 15 minutes, Friel contributed across the board with three points, two rebounds, one steal and four assists, which matched her career high.
New Hampshire improved its win total seven games from the 2010-11 (nine victories) to 2011-12 seasons (16 victories) to tie the second-highest margin of improvement in program history. UNH also saw a seven-game improvement from 1998 (12) to 1999 (19), while the highest mark of eight games was from 1991 (10) to 1992 (18).
Sophomore forward Stephanie Spoto scored two points each of the initial four games of the season before matching her career high of four points Nov. 28 at Harvard.
Spoto recorded a personal-best four rebounds Nov. 25 vs. Cornell and career-high two assists against both Cornell and Holy Cross (Nov. 17). She is averaging 11.2 minutes per game.
Sophomore forward Kaylee Kilpatrick has started all five games and is averaging 6.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 26.0 minutes per game. Kilpatrick leads the team in field goal percentage at 60.0% and blocks (three), and she is fourth in both scoring as well as fifth in rebounding.
Kilpatrick's highlights include a career-high eight points at Yale (Nov. 14) and season-high 10 points on 5-for-6 shooting at Holy Cross (Nov. 17). She also tallied a personal-best three assists in that game vs. HC.
Sophomore point guard Ariel Gaston has played in all five games and was in the starting lineup in consecutive games against Cornell and Harvard; she helped secure the Wildcats' victory against Cornell with two defensive rebounds in the last 15 seconds of the game. Gaston's season highlights include four rebounds at Yale and Harvard as well as three steals at Holy Cross. Six of her eight points this season have come on a pair of 3-pointers.
Sophomore guard Alexandra Leftridge has not seen game action this season. She is expected back from injury in late December. Sarah-Marie Frankenbeger will miss the entire 2012-13 season due to injury.
Entering this weekend's action, UNH ranks second in the America East conference in both field goal percentage (.414) and free throw percentage (.716). The Wildcats are fourth in rebounding margin (+0.8).
On the individual leaderboards, two 'Cats rank among the top 10 in scoring with senior guard Cari Reed at No. 4 (13.0 ppg) and senior forward Morgan Frame at No. 6 (12.8 ppg). Reed also ranks fourth in rebounding at 8.4 per game and is atop the leaderboard in free throw percentage (.923).
The Wildcats have two of the top six in field goal percentage. Sophomore forward Kaylee Kilpatrick is No. 2 at 60.0% and is followed by Frame (No. 6; 49.0%).
One current 'Cat is already in the Top 10 on UNH's career leaderboard for 3-point field goals made and another will approach that list during the 2012-13 season. Senior shooting guard Cari Reed is currently No. 6 with 130 3-pointers while junior point guard Kelsey Hogan is 12th at 90. Hogan is also tied at No. 14 in career assists with 218.
The UNH women's basketball program welcomes four newcomers to the 2012-13 squad and that includes sophomore center Corinne Coia, who transferred following her freshman year (2011-12) at the University of Rhode Island; she is ineligible to play for the Wildcats this season.
Kendall Martenet is the other new addition to the frontcourt. The 6-2 forward was a three-time captain at Mukwonago High School, where she led the team in rebounding as a junior and senior.
Martenet, who played four minutes off the bench in the season opener at Yale (Nov. 14) but did not play at Holy Cross, saw four minutes of first-half action last Tuesday at BC. She hit 15-foot jumpers on back-to-back possessions to lift the 'Cats into a 33-33 tie late in the half. Those marked her first career points. Martenet is averagins 1.8 ppg and 0.5 rpg in 5.0 minutes per game (four games played).
Elizabeth Belanger and Victoria Duffey joined the Wildcat backcourt. Belanger garnered ESPN Boston All-State Team and Boston Herald All-Scholastic Team, Lowell Sun Player of the Year and Dual County League MVP accolades at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School.
Belanger, who has started each of the last three games, is averaging 6.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 25.8 minutes per game. She ranks third on the team in both rebounding and assists.
In her second career start, Belanger recorded her first career double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds against Cornell (Nov. 25). Belanger made her collegiate debut off the bench in the season opener at Yale. She finished with eight points, three rebounds and one steal in 25 minutes.
Duffey comes to UNH from Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes after lettering at Walled Lake Central High School for three years. She was a three-year starting point guard and two-time captain at Walled Lake Central, where she earned three All-Conference and two Academic All-State accolades.
Duffey has seen limited action off the bench in all five gmes. She is averaging 4.4 minutes per game with a season-high of nine at Holy Cross.
Wildcats On The Air
The Wildcat Sports Radio Network will broadcast a total of 12 UNH women's basketball games during the 2012-13 season. All 11 home games as well as the Nov. 28 road game at Harvard will be on the air. The Wildcat Sports Radio Network affiliates include:
WGIR-AM 610 (flagship station) – Manchester
WPKX-AM 930 (flagship station) – Rochester
WQSO-FM 96.7 (flagship station) – Portsmouth
WNTK-FM 99.7 – New London
A total of four games will be televised, including home games vs. Central Connecticut State University and Boston University. Here is the complete schedule.
Dec. 9 Central Conn State WBIN and FOX College Sports Atlantic
Jan. 16 at Albany ESPN3
Jan. 19 Boston U. WBIN and FOX College Sports Atlantic
Jan. 26 at Binghamton Time Warner Cable
Another option for fans to follow live action of the UNH women's basketball home games is online videostreaming at unhwildcats.tv
Scouting the Bobcats
Quinnipiac University (Hamden, Conn.) enters the weekend with a 4-0 overall record that includes 3-0 on the road. Most recently, the Bobcats defeated Yale, 89-62, on the road on Wednesday, Nov. 28 to increase their scoring average to 77.8 points per game. QU is also averaging 41.8 rebounds per game, but the opposition is at 43.6.
All five Quinnipiac starters are averaging at least 20.2 minutes per game, but no more than 26.5 mpg.
Senior guard Felicia Barron scored a team-high 16 points against Yale and sophomore forward Samantha Guastella chipped in with 13 points and nine rebounds as the Bobcats shot 51.3% from the floor while limiting Yale to 36.1%.
Barron leads Quinnipiac in both scoring (20.5 ppg) and steals (17), and she is second in assists. Guastella leads the team in 3-pointers (seven) and is shooting 70% (7-for-10) from beyond the arc; she is also the team leader in blocks (six) and ranks second in rebounding (7.0 rpg). Sophomore guard Jasmine Martin ranks second in scoring (10.2 ppg). Junior forward Brittany McQuain is atop the rebound leader board at 7.2 per game.
Scouting the Bears
Brown University (Providence, R.I.) enters its tournament with a 2-4 overall record that includes 1-1 at home. In the past week, the Bears lost 58-57 at Pitt (Nov. 24) and 81-58 to Bryant at home (Nov. 28).
Lauren Clarke has been the team's top scorer three times, including each of the past two games with 20 points at Pitt and 16 vs. Bryant. She leads the team at 14.8 points per game and is followed by Sheila Dixon at 13.4 ppg. Clarke is the Bears' top 3-point threat at 16-for-36 (44.4%), and she also leads the team in assists (12), steals (12) and free throws (15 of 18).
Dixon (6.6 rpg) and Clarke (5.0) rank 1-2 in rebounding, and Dixon is second in steals (11).
Head coach Jean Marie (Giarrusso) Burr, now in her 25th year at Brown, is a 1977 graduate of UNH. She captained the 1976-77 Wildcats squad (and led the team in scoring at 19.3 ppg), played professionally for the New Jersey Gems and was inducted into the UNH Hall of Fame in 1997.
Scouting the Broncos
Rider University (Lawrenceville, N.J.) of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) enters the weekend with a 2-3 overall record that includes 2-1 on the road. Most recently, the Broncs defeated Lafayette, 68-64, on the road Tuesday, November 27 to end a three-game losing streak. They opened the season with a 62-50 win at Stony Brook University.
Senior guard Sironda Chambers matched a career-high 24 points and also recorded seven rebounds, and MyNeshia McKenzie recorded her second double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Broncs to victory at Lafayette.
Chambers leads the team in both scoring (15.0 ppg) and assists (10). McKenzie ranks first in rebounds (9.8 rpg) and steals (six), and is second in scoring (14.2) ans assists (seven). Mikal Johnson leads the team in 3-pointers (eight) but is shooting just 25.8% from beyond the arc.
Game Notes: Women's Basketball Readies For Brown Classic (Dec. 1-2)
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