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Free throws help PSU Men’s Hoop down Eastern Conn.

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Freshman Andreas Pope (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and junior Anthony Oglesby (Brooklyn, N.Y.) combined for 42 points and 21 rebounds Saturday afternoon, leading Plymouth State University to a 74-65 Little East Conference victory over Eastern Connecticut State University at Foley Gymnasium.

The Panthers also scored 35 of their 74 points from the free throw line, helping them take over sole possession of second place in the LEC at 7-3 in league play, 17-4 overall. ECSU, which had won seven of its last eight, dropped out of a tie for second place in the conference, falling to 6-3 in the LEC and 11-9 overall.

Pope came off the Panther bench to score a career-high 23 points and grab nine rebounds, making 7-of-11 from the field and 9-of-11 from the line. Oglesby added 19 points and 12 rebounds, his seventh double-double of the year, connecting on 5-of-10 from the floor and 9-of-10 from the charity stripe. PSU also got 14 points from junior Nick Pelotte (Bingham, Maine).

Eastern Conn. was led by senior Christopher Morgan (New Britain, Conn.), who provided 15 points and eight boards off the Warriors bench. Senior Michael Kipphut (Meriden, Conn.) added 13 points and classmate Gordon Shepard (Waterbury, Conn.) contributed 10, while junior Jeroy Smith (New Haven, Conn.) finished with seven points and a game-high 13 rebounds.

It was anyone's game in the first half, with PSU taking an eight-point lead (15-7) but Eastern coming back to enjoy a 35-33 advantage at the break. The Panthers maintained a single-digit lead most of the second half, pulling ahead for their biggest lead of the game (66-54) with 2:45 remaining.

The visitors were forced to foul, committing 34 fouls in the contest and sending the Panthers to the line for 48 free throws. PSU didn't make a field goal in the last seven minutes of the game, but scored its last 15 points from the line by making 15 of 24 down the stretch.

Strong defense kept both team' shooting percentage below 40 percent, and the hosts had a 44-35 rebounding advantage. ECSU was 10-of-21 from three-point range, while PSU made just 1-of-10 from beyond the arc.

Both teams return to action against instate rivals on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. PSU travels to Keene State and Eastern visits Western Connecticut.

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