PLATTSBURGH — It was a battle.
The Plattsburgh State men’s basketball team executed down the stretch Friday night and recorded a hard-fought 78-68 win over The College of Brockport in SUNY Athletic Conference play at Memorial Hall.
“Brockport plays hard and makes you protect the ball,” Plattsburgh coach Tom Curle said. “It was a very good win for us.”
The Cardinals (14-7, 10-4) helped preserve the victory by hitting 35-of-48 from the foul line to offset 32.8 percent from the field and 16.7 percent from 3-point range.
Plattsburgh trailed for a good share of the first half and didn’t regain the lead until Shamoy McIntosh’s basket with 12:42 left in the second gave the Cardinals a 50-48 edge. It went back-and-forth after that until Plattsburgh, trailing 62-61, rattled off seven points in a row to take the lead for good at 69-62. Shavar Fields connected on a 3-point play, Ezra Hodgson nailed a 3-pointer and McIntosh added a breakaway dunk.
“That was a huge 3-pointer by Hodgson,” Curle said.
The Golden Eagles (13-9, 8-7) never got under six points the rest of the way, with the Cardinals’ biggest lead being 74-63.
It wasn’t a good first half for Plattsburgh.
Brockport got hot from 3-point range and the cold-shooting Cardinals trailed by as many as eight points before a 40-35 halftime defict.
“We didn’t play very well in the first half, but we were still down only five points,” Curle said.
Plattsburgh got its act together in the second half and did a lot better job on the boards. The Cardinals were outrebounded, 26-18, over the first 20 minutes, but outrebounded Geneseo by a 28-23 margin after halftime.
Plattsburgh also limited Brockport to 28 second-half points.
“One of the things we told the guys at halftime was that we needed to out rebound them in the second half,” Curle said. “We’re bigger than they are and there’s no way we should get outrebounded by them. I’d like to think our size started to wear them down.