BY TIM PULSIFER
---- — PLATTSBURGH — No letdown here.
Plattsburgh State led wire-to-wire, scoring a solid, 77-58, victory over Potsdam in SUNY Athletic Conference women’s basketball Tuesday night at Memorial Hall.
Although their margin of victory was far smaller than when the teams met earlier in the season, the Cardinals left nothing to chance, rolling to another impressive double-digit victory over the Bears.
Plattsburgh (12-11, 8-8 SUNYAC) shot the ball extremely well throughout, connecting on an even 50 percent of their shots from the field and 92 percent from the line.
“We shot the lights out,” Cardinals coach Cheryl Cole said. “We were executing, sharing the ball real well and everyone was making shots. It was also nice the way we were were making free throws. That’s something we haven’t always done and it was nice to see us those shots going down.
“Overall, on offense, I was very pleased with our effort; this was a very well-balanced team effort (Tuesday) and a big win heading into our last weekend of the regular season.”
Plattsburgh opened the game with a 21-10 run over the first nine minutes of play, led 41-26 at the break and never let the margin fall beneath 10 points for the balance of the evening.
The Cardinals went deep into their bench throughout Tuesday night’s game and received valuable minutes from multiple players. By the final buzzer, nine different players had contributed points with four reaching double figures.
Devona Paul, Misha Green, Catherine Cassidy and Kathleen Payne all had outstanding all-around games for the Cardinals.
Paul was good on 5-of-6 attempts from the field and a perfect 6-fo-6 from the line for a season-high 16 points. Green added an even dozen points; Cassidy recorded a season-best 11-point, 10-rebound double-double performance and Payne chipped in with 10 points, including a pair of threes, and also dished out five assists.
“We weren’t 100 percent healthwise, there’s been a lot of sickness going around, so we had to limit some people’s minutes and substitute a little more than usual,” Cole said. “We could have played a little better on defense at a couple of points in the game but, overall, I thought, everyone did a great job stepping in and making plays.
“It was really a solid team effort out there for us tonight.”
Potsdam (1-22, 0-16 SUNYAC) came up short in its bid for a first conference victory of the season but showed plenty of heart as a team and had a couple of notable individual performances on the offensive side of the ball.
Katy Briedis and Jessica Kouzan each connected on three shots from beyond the arc and shared overall scoring honors with 20 points apiece for the Bears. Potsdam, which connected on a total of nine 3-pointers on the night, also finished with a 35-33 advantage over Plattsburgh in rebounding.
The Cardinals, who have now won three in a row, can next look forward to an all-important final weekend of the regular season.
A potential spot in the SUNYAC tournament will be on the line as Plattsburgh hosts Cortland on Friday night and then Oswego on Saturday afternoon. Both of these contests will take place at Memorial Hall.
Plattsburgh State 77, Potsdam 58
Russell 2-0-6; Kmiecinski 0-0-0; Kouzan 6-5-20; Briedis 7-3-20; Wall 2-1-5; McNamara 2-0-4; Akingba1-0-2; Reynolds 0-0-0; LaVoie 0-0-0; Addison 0-0-0. Totals: 20-9-58.
Plattsburgh State (77)
Marshall 2-2-7; Green 5-2-12; Payne 2-4-10; Cassidy 4-1-11; Nucaro 2-0-4; Hughes 0-0-0; Lloyd 2-0-4; Reifinger 3-2-9; Paul 5-6-16; Adedapo 1-2-4; Lewis 0-0-0. Totals: 26-19-77.
Halftime: Plattsburgh State 41-26.
3-point goals: Potsdam (9) Russell 2, Kouzan 3, Breidis 3, McNamara. Plattsburgh State (6) Payne 2, Cassidy 2, Marshall, Reifinger.