PLATTSBURGH — Plattsburgh State men’s basketball coach Tom Curle, who says his team still has a long way to go, took the good with the not so good Tuesday night.
John Perez scored 19 points and grabbed 14 rebounds as the Cardinals (2-1) opened their home schedule with an 82-69 nonconference victory over St. Lawrence University at Memorial Hall.
“We have good players, but right now we’re relying on our ability to score,” Curle said. “St. Lawrence is a good rebounding team and thank God we had John Perez (Tuesday) because I don’t know if we had anyone else who could get a rebound. We’ve only played three games, but I’m concerned about our defense and shot selection.
“That said, St. Lawrence is going to be a team that competes and we held them to 69 points while we scored 82. That’s not terrible. And we held them to 42 percent shooting from the field and forced 23 turnovers. So, we did some good things.”
Chris Manning’s 3-pointer at the end of the half gave the Cardinals a 40-35 lead after 20 minutes.
Plattsburgh held a five-point lead four times in the opening half. The largest advantage for the Saints was two points on two occasions.
The Saints (1-2), however, hung around for much of the second half before Plattsburgh went up by as many as 17 points late in the contest. The Cardinals, who hit just one-of-five from the foul line in the first half, scored their final 11 points of the contest from the line and finished 17-of-28.
Perez, after missing the end of last season with an injury, looked good hitting six-of-12 from the field and seven-of-eight from the charity stripe to go along with his game-high 14 rebounds. He scored 14 of his points in the second half.