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March 07. 2014 9:52PM

Women's basketball: UNH advances in tourney


 

The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team showed Friday it can win a tournament shootout.

The Wildcats, led by Nashua's Kelsey Hogan and Corinne Coia, rallied from a seven-point second-half deficit to top Vermont, 85-79, in an America East quarterfinal at SEFCU Arena in Albany, N.Y.

UNH, seeded third in the tourney, advanced to play No. 2 Stony Brook on Sunday. Stony Brook beat Maryland-Baltimore County earlier in the day, 61-49.

Hogan, named to the AE all-conference team, emerged from first-half foul trouble to score 13 of her 18 points in the second half. Coia, a sophomore from North Smithfield, R.I., poured in 11 of her team-best 21 points in the second half. The Wildcats scored 52 points in the second half to pull away late.

Vermont (7-23), seeded sixth, was led by freshman Jordan Eisler, with 22 points. Niki Taylor and Kayla Burchill scored 18 each.

UNH (19-11) tied the game at 44 on Elizabeth Belanger's bucket early in the second half. The Wildcats took their first lead (51-49) since midway through the first half when Kaylee Kilpatrick notched an old-fashioned three-point play.

New Hampshire assumed control with a 14-4 surge beginning with nine minutes remaining and the score tie at 59. Hogan scoring five of those 14 points, and UNH maintained at least a five-point margin the rest of the way, thanks to good foul shooting (8-of-10) in the final 1:40.

Coia was seven-for-nine from the floor and added a team-high eight rebounds for the Wildcats who shot 53 percent from the field and committed just 11 turnovers.

Belanger added 16 points, 12 in the second half surge and Ariel Gaston chipped in with 10.


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