KEENE, N.H. — Plattsburgh State men’s basketball coach Tom Curle wants his team to be mentally and physically tough down the stretch in games.
The Cardinals were just that Tuesday night while recording a 70-64 victory at Keene State in non-conference play.
“No doubt, the guys played really tough,” said Curle. “They had a 6-10 kid (Rashad Wright), who we played 1-on-1 and held him to 2-of-11 shooting.
“I was very pleased with our effort. We played everyone in the first half and then shortened the bench some in the second half. Keene State is a good team and it was a good win for us.”
The Cardinals (5-2) overcame a 35-point performance by the Owls’ 5-9 guard Ryan Martin, off 12-of-16 shooting from the field and 8-of-10 from the foul line.
“He (Martin) hit some tough shots where we were right on him — he’s very good and he had it tonight,” said Curle. “But I thought Jordan Moody did a good job defending him the last seven or eight minutes where his only points came on foul shots.”
Moody came off the bench to lead the Cardinals with 15 points, while Ezra Hodgson also hit in double figures with 12.
John Perez hauled down 12 rebounds for Plattsburgh, while Mike Mitchell dished out six assists and Chris Manning five.
“Moody played very well,” said Curle. “He went into the game with a very strong defensive mindset. When that happens, his offense will follow.
“Perez played a great game. He had a lot of all hustle plays and secured the ball. Manning won a lot of the 50-50 balls.”
Plattsburgh shot 37.7 percent (23-of-61) from the field, 31.8 percent (7-of-22) from three-point range and 70.8 percent (17-of-24) from the foul line.
“When you play as hard as we did defensively, with a lot of intensity, it takes time for the offense to catch up,” said Curle.
Martin was the lone Owl (3-3) in double figures. Wright did grab a game-high 15 rebounds.
It was a good momentum builder for the Cardinals, who return to SUNY Athletic Conference play this weekend, hosting Fredonia State at 8 p.m. on Friday and Buffalo State at 4 p.m. on Saturday.
“We have to protect our home court,” said Curle.
Plattsburgh 70, Keene State 64
Mitchell 2-0-5, Manning 3-2-8, McIntosh 2-3-7, Perez 2-5-9, Hodgson 4-1-12, Ottey 0-0-0, Outlaw 0-0-0, Tibbs 2-0-4, Fields 1-0-2, Moody, 4-6-15, Baker 0-0-0, Parker 0-0-0, Correa 3-0-8, Sergiej 0-0-0. 23-17-70.
Keene State (64)
Fazio 2-2-6, Wright 2-1-5, Tipton 1-4-6, Doyle 2-0-4, Martin 12-8-35, Walcott 0-0-0, Hepple 0-0-0, Gagliolo 2-2-6, Lacroix 1-0-2, Boyatsis 0-0-0, Howard 0-0-0. Totals: 22-17-64.
Halftime: Plattsburgh, 31-30.
3-point goals: Plattsburgh (7): Hodgson 3; Correa 2; Mitchell; Moody. Keene (3): Martin 3.