ONEONTA — Many pundits in the sporting world say one of the most difficult tasks to accomplish is to defeat the same team three times in a single season.
In its first-round SUNY Athletic Conference playoff game, the Plattsburgh State women’s basketball got a lot of pleasure out of showing Oneonta State how true that particular opinion can be.
Kathleen Payne recorded a game-high 26 points and was one of three Cardinal (14-12) players to finish with 10 rebounds as Plattsburgh ran over the Red Dragons by a score of 66-52 at Dewar Arena Tuesday night.
Thanks to back-to-back triples from Brittany Marshall and Brooke Reifinger, Plattsburgh grabbed its first lead of the tilt, 12-9, with 12:18 to go in the opening frame.
Oneonta State captured its final lead of the game with a 7-0 run that culminated with Kristin Pappalardo’s first long ball of the contest that made things 16-12.
That’s when the Cardinals started rolling.
Dana Nucaro began a Plattsburgh’s scoring explosion with a seemingly innocuous layup off of an inbounds pass from Catherine Cassidy before the latter made the Red Dragons pay for their lackluster perimeter defense.
“Our effort was tremendous,” Plattsburgh coach Cheryl Cole said. “We played more aggressive than they did, we played harder than they did and we put together 40 minutes of great team basketball.”
Plattsburgh State’s offensive success seemed to fuel its defensive intensity as the Cardinals rendered any sort of Oneonta State offensive game plan obsolete for the rest of the half. The Red Dragons were just 1-of-12 from the field while committing five turnovers during the final stages of the half.
The first half mercifully ended for the Red Dragons after Plattsburgh State’s 22-2 run that made things 34-18 heading into the halftime strategy session. The Cardinals were 6-of-13 (46.2 percent) from three-point land in the opening frame.