Feb 23, 2016 11:07 PM

SNHU basketball beats St. Anselm in 2OT nail-biter, could be final chapter of NH rivalry


HOOKSETT - It's a rivalry that's been a part of New Hampshire for decades.

Southern New Hampshire and St. Anselm College men's basketball met up for what could be the last game ever between the two schools on Tuesday.

A massive crowd was amped up to watch them battle it out on the court. It's a date students and players had circled in their calendars.

"It's always exciting to see them on our schedule," an SNHU junior said.

The rivalry is more than just sports - it's two coaches who have made an impact in the N.H. sports scene.

The schools and fans are only six miles apart.

"I love coming here," said long-time spectator Glenn Gunn. "I've watched both schools have tremendous seasons, great athletes - and it gives me a chance to come up and see tremendous athletes performing and every year doesn't let me down."

Tuesday's game could be the last with the two teams in the same division.

The NCAA is considering dropping St. Anselm's down to a Division III - to the dismay of some of the St. A's students.

"It's really sad," said Vanessa Goddard, a senior at St. Anselm College. "I'm not about the movement for D-III. I think we deserve to say D-II, and it's kinda sad that the rivalry could come to an end."

But the decision hasn't been made yet.

"We're playing for the regular season championship," St. Anselm Head Coach Keith Dickson said. "We've got that on the line, you know? So forget the rivalry with Southern New Hampshire - if we win, we'll be regular season champions."

It wasn't in the cards, however, as the Penmen got possibly the last laugh in the rivalry.

A buzzer beater in the second overtime gave SNHU a 70-68 win, knocking St. Anselm to a second-place finish in the conference.


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