PLATTSBURGH — The Plattsburgh State men’s basketball team could have made things a little easier on itself at times Friday night.
The Cardinals, however, were still able to grind out a 75-70 SUNY Athletic Conference victory over New Paltz at Memorial Hall.
Plattsburgh (9-5, 5-2) will look to make it a weekend sweep at home when Oneonta comes to town for a 4 p.m. contest today. The Red Dragons dropped an 82-62 decision at Potsdam on Friday night.
“Our first goal is to make the playoffs,” said Cardinals coach Tom Curle. “If we can get to 6-2 this weekend, that will leave us with 10 league games remaining — five on the road and five at home.
“Nine wins should get us into the playoffs. And if we can get to nine wins quickly, we can adjust our goals. That’s why winning two games at home this weekend is so important for us.”
Plattsburgh led, 30-28, at the half, but it could have been much more had the Cardinals made their layups.
The Cardinals, after trailing 4-3 early on, never lost the lead the rest of the half. Plattsburgh did hold a 13-4 advantage and a seven-point lead before the Hawks scored the final five points of the half.
A layup by 6-foot-7-inch Deveino McRae gave the Hawks (6-8, 4-3) a 35-32 lead early in the second half.
Curle then inserted 6-foot-6-inch Reggie Williams into the game and that’s when the contest started to go the Cardinals’ way.
Williams hit both his field-goal attempts and went two-for-two from the line, while grabbing four rebounds and dishing out two assists in 13 minutes.
“Their No. 50 (McRae) got inside and hit two layups early in the second half,” said Curle. “When we put Reggie in, it was a big body against a big body. Any thoughts No. 50 had of dominating inside ended when Reggie went in.