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Women’s Basketball loses in first round to New Hampshire in heartbreaking fashion

 

Stony Brook women's basketball comes to an end for the 2012-13 campaign as the University of New Hampshire celebrates a last-second victory.  (EZRA MARGONO / THE STATESMAN)
Stony Brook women’s basketball comes to an end for the 2012-13 campaign as the University of New Hampshire celebrates a last-second victory. (EZRA MARGONO / THE STATESMAN)

The Stony Brook University women’s basketball team’s season came to an end on Friday evening when the University of New Hampshire Wildcats scored the last bucket of the game on a three-point shot in the final seconds the game. It was a dramatic conclusion to an evenly matched quarterfinal game in the America East Championship.

“A ton of credit to New Hampshire and their coaching staff,” head coach Beth O’Boyle said after the game. “Every America East game that we’ve had has been a battle.”

The game came down the final seconds, and neither team was able to forge a substantial and insurmountable lead throughout of the game.

“Basketball is a game of moments,” senior guard Dani Klupenger said, “And we were on the losing end of this moment.”
In the final collegiate game of her career, Klupenger had nine points on three three-pointers.

Also featuring prominently for Stony Brook was freshman forward Brittany Snow, who lead the team with 15 points, and sophomore forward Sabre Proctor, who had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

The game began at a moderate pace as neither team was able to pull away from the other; both squads scored seven points three and a half minutes into the game. The tempo then slowed down for much of the second half while the Wildcats for the most part maintained a small lead.

The Seawolves took a 18-17 lead with 2:13 left to play in the first half when Klupenger hit her second three-pointer of the evening. The lead would prove to be short-lived, however, as New Hampshire took it back within a minute. The two teams exchanged baskets, but neither could establish a run, going into halftime with the Wildcats having a slim 22-21 lead.

New Hampshire came out of the gates quickly in the second half, scoring eight points in the first three minutes. As the game entered its final minutes, the Wildcats held a 10-point lead.

It was at this point that Stony Brook turned the game around and chipped away. The Seawolves went on an 8-2 run to reduce the lead to 44-40. Two subsequent, back-to-back jumpers tied the game.

Morgan Frame of New Hampshire then responded with a close shot to give her team a 2-point lead, an advantage that did not last long as Snow hit two clutch free throws to tie the game at 46.

“I didn’t want to let my team down,” Snow said. “I wanted to give my seniors another game to play.”

There was one minute left to play, and Stony Brook was unable to capitalize on its possession. On the other side of the court, Kelsey Hogan of New Hampshire was able to get her hands on the ball as the seconds slipped away. She hoisted up a desperation shot that sunk into the basket and brought the game to an end.

It was the third straight time that the Wildcats defeated the Seawolves in tournament play, the last two occasions happening in 2003 and 2004.

New Hampshire will advance to the semifinal round of the tournament, taking on first-seed Albany, and Stony Brook will have to look to next year for another opportunity.

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