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February 7, 2006

Ruocco’s career-high leads PSU Men’s Hoop past Southern Maine

GORHAM, Maine - Junior Devin Ruocco (Dover, N.H.) scored a career-high 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds Tuesday evening to lead Plymouth State University to a 69-51 Little East Conference win over the University of Southern Maine at Warren G. Hill Gymnasium.

The Panthers stopped their three-game losing skid and improved to 14-8 overall and 6-5 in Little East action. The Huskies suffered their second conference loss in as many games and fell to 10-12 overall and 3-8 in the LEC.

Ruocco knocked down 6-of-13 shots from the floor, including a 4-for-9 mark from three-point range to pace the Panthers to the victory. He had reached double figures in scoring only twice previously in his career, finishing with 11 points on two occasions earlier this season.

Senior Kevin Boutilier (North Andover, Mass.) and junior Mike Walcek (Dover, N.H.) each added 10 points for the Panthers, while Boutilier chipped in a double-double by grabbing a game-high 11 rebounds, including six offensive boards.

Senior Bill Hardwick (Boothbay, Maine) led the Huskies with 17 points, while sophomore Walter Phillips (Portland, Maine) was the only other Southern Maine player in double-figures with 12 points and seven rebounds.

Trailing by 10 points at the half, 39-29, Southern Maine cut its deficit to five points in the opening five minutes of the second half. However, that was as close as the Huskies would get the rest of the way as Plymouth State responded with a 10-0 run and never looked back.

Both teams are back in action Saturday with more Little East action, Southern Maine visiting Rhode Island College and Plymouth State traveling to UMass Boston, both games beginning at 3:00 p.m.

(Courtesy of Southern Maine Sports Information)

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