BY TIM PULSIFER
PLATTSBURGH — Plattsburgh State wrapped up an outstanding first semester with a solid 71-60 win over Buffalo State in SUNY Athletic Conference women’s basketball at Memorial Hall Saturday afternoon.
For a third straight game, the Cardinals took down a team that had finished ahead of them in the conference standings a year ago. On Saturday afternoon, it was the defending conference champions that found out how much a difference a year can make.
Much as it had the previous night versus Fredonia, Plattsburgh played aggressive defense but struggled offensively in a back-and-forth opening half. The Cardinals connected on just nine of their 33 shot attempts in the first half and went into the break trailing 28-27.
“I thought, we should have been up at the half,” said Plattsburgh head coach Cheryl Cole, whose team had squandered an early 11-point advantage. “We were getting some good looks at the basket, but we just weren’t finishing. Thankfully, though, we were able to figure it out and turn things around in the second half.”
For a second straight outing, it was point guard Brittany Marshall who kept the boat afloat for the Cardinals in the early going. Marshall, who has been outstanding over the early part of the season, had 10 of her game-high 19 points, including a pair of long threes, to pace the home team in the opening stanza.
“That first half was a battle, but I think our conditioning took over in the second and turned out to be the difference in the game,” said Cole. “We were able to push the pace of the game in the second half and they just couldn’t keep up.
“I think the pace of the game and our defense just finally wore them down. I think we were the better conditioned and the stronger team at the end.”