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January 14, 2006

PSU Men’s Hoop needs double overtime to defeat Eastern Conn.

WILLIMANTIC, Conn. - Senior Kevin Boutilier (North Andover, Mass.) matched his career high with 24 points Saturday afternoon and Plymouth State University went 10-for-10 from the free throw line in the second overtime, knocking off Eastern Connecticut State University, 81-72, in a Little East Conference men's basketball game at Geissler Gymnasium.

PSU posted its 11th straight win over Eastern, improving to record to 10-4 on the season and 3-2 in conference play. The Warriors have lost their last four to drop to 4-9 overall and 0-5 in the LEC.

Boutilier made 8-of-16 from the field and 8-of-10 from the line for his 24 points. He helped the Panthers shoot 88.5 percent from the line in the game (23-of-26). Senior Brandon Boggs (Strafford, N.H.) contributed a career-high 16 points (on 6-of-10 shooting), sophomore Phil Bourassa (Old Orchard Beach, Maine) chipped in with 12 points (8-for-8 from the line), and junior Mike Walcek (Dover, N.H.) added a double-double with 10 points and a game-high 12 rebounds.

PSU sophomore Tim Russell (Littleton, N.H.) forced overtime when he sank a jumper with two seconds left to tie the game at 57-all at the end of regulation. Eastern junior Geoffrey Richardson (Hartford, Conn.) drained two free throws with 50 seconds left in the first overtime forced a second five-minute session.

After Eastern tied the game for the 10th time with 2:17 left in the second overtime, the Panthers scored five straight to put the game away. Boggs's fourth three-pointer of the game made it 73-70 and Bourassa sank two free throws to make it 75-70. Bourassa, Russell and Walcek each canned a pair of free throws the rest of the way.

The Warriors trailed by as many as 17 points in the first half but the cut gap to six by halftime. Eastern took its first lead of the game (49-47) midway through the second half, and led by two points with 13 seconds left in regulation, but Russell canned a jumper from the left perimeter with two seconds left to tie the game at 57-all. Richardson was fouled attempting to shoot from the right base line as time expired but the foul was ruled to have come after the expiration of play.

Richardson led Eastern with a career-high 20 points, seven rebounds and six assists, while sophomore Kevin Zalucki (Enfield, Conn.) had 15 points and eight rebounds and junior Leon Martin (Woodbury, Conn.) 11 points and eight rebounds.

PSU returns home to host Southern Maine on Tuesday at Foley Gymnasium (7:30 p.m.) Eastern hosts Keene State College on Tuesday (7:30 p.m.)

(Courtesy of ECSU Sports Information)

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