Wear Your Ugliest Sweater for Pioneers Final Non-Conference Matchup versus UNH

Wear Your Ugliest Sweater for Pioneers Final Non-Conference Matchup versus UNH

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FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The Sacred Heart women's basketball team (4-6) returned after a week-long hiatus Sunday dropping a competitive contest at Siena. The Pioneers now prepare for their final non-league assignment welcoming New Hampshire (7-4) to the Pitt Center for an Ugly Sweater Game, Wednesday, December 20 at noon.

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We've done this before…

The New Hampshire frontcourt got its way over SHU en route to a decisive 71-43 victory on December 18, 2016, at Lundholm Gymnasium in Durham, NH. Wildcats' Kat Fogarty (15), Carlie Pogue (16), Aliza Simpson (10) and Ashley Storey (12) scored in double figures while then Pioneer Kelcey Castro added a team-high 13 points for SHU. Katherine Haines put up nine points and six boards (three on each end of the floor). Kiana Ye, Madison Cheatham, Allyson Murphy and Tykera Carter checked in but were able to score.

SHU shot 32-percent for the game and 21.2-percent from downtown. New Hampshire shot 46.4-percent and 45.5-percent in those respective statistics.

History shows…

This is the fifth meeting in the all-time series, which currently stands with the Wildcats having a 3-1 advantage over the Pioneers. SHU is 1-1 at home against UNH in the series, and 0-2 on the road.

It's in the past now…

Haines made history pulling down a career-high 21 boards in a Sunday setback to Siena, 62-57. After leading through the first 21 minutes of play, Sacred Heart surrendered their control in the third quarter but quickly regained their advantage and held on to it for the early moments of the fourth. In the final window, Siena embraced an 8-3 run to put them back in front and went up by as many as seven before settling on the 62-57 final for its win at the Alumni Recreation Center Sunday afternoon.

Rolling with the Big Pios…

Haines secured her 15th career double-double through the first half versus Siena registering 11 points and 12 boards prior to the intermission. She would go on to finish with a career-high 21 rebounds which tie her for fourth-most and eighth all-time in single-game performances in the Pioneers' record book. Her showing was five boards shy of a production not yet done at Sacred Heart. Haines pulled down five on the Pioneers' glass, recorded 13 points and two blocks in 31 minutes out on the floor.

Haines tied her one-game production with Robin Jeffress who notched her tally against Springfield on February 14, 1980. Haines is the first player to generate 20 or more rebounds since Hannah Kimmel snagged 23 at Saint Francis U on January 17, 2015. Haines, Kimmel and Jasmine Walker (20, vs. Rider 12/29/05) are the only student-athletes to achieve this feat in the 2000s era. Jeffress owns the Sacred Heart record with 25 seen against Quinnipiac on February 19, 1980.

Swishin' and dishin'...

At Liberty, Candice Leatherwood dropped 35 and 155 dimes as a freshman and sophomore, respectively. Her 155 assists distributed across her second-year campaign slotted her second on the Flames (2.2 apg). With the Pioneers, she has added 36 more to her arsenal and directs the offense 4.5 times a matchup.

Leatherwood's ball allocation earned her team-highs on six occasions this season evidenced against Monmouth (3), Manhattan (5), Hofstra (8), Brown (5), Providence (7) and Siena (6). National powerhouse Florida State is the only team that has interrupted Leatherwood's passing ability as the redshirt-junior was unable to tally versus the Seminoles but otherwise has supplied at least two assists in each outing.

Her team-leading assists performances displayed against Monmouth and Manhattan were also accompanied by team-leading scoring numbers, 19 and 23, respectively. Her 23 dropped facing the Jaspers stands as her personal best.

Give me a high six-five…

The Pioneers are 4-2 when they score 65 or more in a matchup. Sacred Heart is also 0-4 when it gets 64 or less by the final horn. SHU picked up losses to Monmouth (69-64), Harvard (65-62), Florida State (101-51) and most recently Siena (62-57) when its offense failed to reach 65 points.

Women's basketball has only scored less than it did at Siena, at Florida State only raking in 52 points. Their most lucrative performance accounted for 81 points in a double overtime loss to Hofstra. However, 78 points are the most converted into a win exemplified facing Providence.

Hound by the rebound…

Sacred Heart has only outrebounded its opponent twice this season edging Manhattan 41-39, and Florida A&M 48-42. Both efforts resulted in wins for the Pioneers.

Despite the outcome, both the Jaspers and the Rattlers still punished the Pioneers in arguably their weakest area. Though Sacred Heart outrebounded both clubs as a whole, Manhattan owned SHU on the offensive glass 16-9 as did FAMU, 13-12. The Pioneers have yet to grab more balls off of their own glass than their foes have. Sacred Heart has come the closest at Monmouth but both teams finished with nine apiece.

Sacred Heart has been topped on the offensive glass to Siena (17-6), Providence (11-4), Brown (19-3), Lehigh (14-10), Hofstra (14-4), Florida State (19-9) and Harvard (24-14) and has only claimed two wins amongst that cohort. SHU is behind a -7.2 margin on its glass and -9.4 on both backboards.

Home mostly-sweet home…

Sacred Heart is 3-1 inside the Pitt Center doors besting Manhattan (65-61), Lehigh (65-55) and Providence (78-75) but coming up short to Hofstra (86-81 2OT). Coach Bike court has housed thrillers so far as three of those matchups were determined by five points or less. SHU's 10-point win over Lehigh is its largest fringe of victory thus far but with just 2:12 remaining in the contest, the Mountain Hawks trailed by five keeping it a two-possession game late in the ball game.

Up, up and away…

Following a career-day on the front end of the Pioneers' two-game swing through the Sunshine State (20 points vs. Florida A&M), Carter only put up seven points against then-nationally regarded Florida State. When the Pride came to Fairfield, the guard reeled in 10 points to get back in double-figures. In a win over Lehigh, the guard upped her performance by one, earned 14 points versus Brown, added 16 points to Providence and most recently logged a team-high 18 points against Siena.

Though the senior is shooting 46.9-percent for the season, in the five-game stretch, Carter is splashing 50-percent of her attempts (26-of-52). From three-point territory, the Alexandra, VA native is performing better in the last five games, 44.4-percent, contrasting her 38.3-percent clip for the year.

"Dab"bin from the start…

Olivia Dabney has been selected to the starting lineup for the last three outings (Siena, Providence, and Brown). She ties Jayla Davis (Harvard, Florida A&M, and Florida State) for the most starts by a freshman this season. Adrianne Hagood joined the first five out against Hofstra and Lehigh.

Coming off the bench, Dabney shot a lowly 14.8-percent (4-of-27) and 9.5-percent from far (2-of-21) earning 1.43 points per game. She also registered three rejections, nine steals, nine assists and 15 rebounds (2.14 rpg) as a reserve encompassing the first seven games.

As a starter, Dabney is sinking 20-percent of her looks (2-of-10) including a 28-percent clip in made triples. Through just three games in this role, she has come down with 16 rebounds (5.3 rpg), five assists, three thefts and one block. She is averaging three points with the initial responsibility.

Play yo' part from the start…

Carter and Erin Storck are the only student-athletes to have started in each of the Pioneers' contests thus far. Jenna Silletti and Dabney are the only other Pioneers that have appeared in all of Sacred Heart's 2017-18 matchups to date registering six and three respective starts. Leatherwood started seven times carting eight features. Cleo Polyzou picked up the start in the five contests she has competed in. Haines has participated in tip-off four times but has touched the hardwood three other times. Davis credited three starts of her five matches played. Hagood earned a pair of starts of the eight times she has battled opponents.

conNECt the dots…

  • Haines was named an NEC Prime Performer for week six after securing a career-high 21 rebounds which is the most by a NEC player in a single game this season.
  • The Pioneers are a part of a four-way tie for third in the league sharing a 4-6 record with Saint Francis U, St. Francis Brooklyn and LIU Brooklyn.
  • Sacred Heart is ranked second amongst its counterparts in scoring offense accumulating 674 points and spewing 67.4 a game. Saint Francis U, the Pioneers opponent December 29, tops the list averaging 76.3 points each time around.
  • The Pioneers are fourth in scoring margin allowing their opponents to score just four more points than they do. Robert Morris (7.0) and Fairleigh Dickinson (2.4) are the only teams averaging a positive margin in the category.
  • The 39.9-percent shooting from the Pioneers is good for third in the league (248-of-621). Fairleigh Dickinson (42.5-percent) and Robert Morris (41.3-percent) are atop the standings, respectively.
  • SHU is fourth in field goal percentage defense allowing squads to net just 40-percent of their looks.
  • Despite its rebounding woes, Sacred Heart is second-best in the NEC in rebounding offense meaning they grab 37.5 boards each time around. Unfortunately, they are seated last in rebounding defense as they allow their foes to snag 46.9 balls off the backboard.
  • The Pioneers are superlative in assist/turnover ratio owning the league with a 9-percent. The group averages 12 helpers and 13.9 turnovers for the clip.
  • Storck is third in conference putting up 15.5 points when she hits the hardwood. Leatherwood is three spots below her averaging 14.8 points per game.
  • Leatherwood is third-best in the conference dishing out 4.5 dimes a contest.
  • Storck's three-point shooting is good for fifth in the NEC (43.5-percent).

Hunting the 'Cats…

Senior forward Kat Fogarty and senior guard Brittni Lai each supplied 14 points scored and the University of New Hampshire took Boston College of the Atlantic Coast Conference to overtime before falling, 64-55, at Conte Forum on Sunday afternoon. The loss became New Hampshire's fourth on the year. 

According to the collegeinsider.com Women's Mid-Major Top 25, New Hampshire is ranked 13th for games through December 12.

Carlie Pogue, the America East Player of the Year last season, has broken into the Top 10 on UNH's career scoring list. She is at No. 10 on the list with 1,261 career points. Pogue is also slotted 12 on the rebounding list with 602. She currently leads the Wildcats in scoring with 15.6 points per game. Olivia Healy is right behind her with 12.6 points averaged thus far.

The group is 2-3 on the road losing at Dartmouth and Boston College. Both setbacks were registered in the month of December as UNH has gone just 2-2 in the window. UNH has topped NEC opponents picking up wins versus Wagner (65-53), Bryant (74-65). The Wildcats have also faced familiar SHU competitors topping the Pioneers intrastate rival, Fairfield, 71-61. They also knocked off Manhattan, 68-55.