PSU Men’s Hoop downs Colby-Sawyer in season opener

Panthers capture first win for new coach Damien Strahorn

              CONCORD, N.H. – Senior Ryan Lambert (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton) scored a game-high 23 points Monday evening as the Plymouth State University men’s basketball team opened the 2010-11 season with an 84-75 victory over Colby-Sawyer College in the Jacob’s Bridge Through Autism Classic, hosted by NHTI at the Crocker Center.

              Lambert made all 10 of his free throw attempts while sinking three field goals from beyond the three-point line and collecting a team-high seven rebounds.  Senior Tom Dowd (Portsmouth, N.H.) added 17 points,  senior Bill Stowell (Stratham, N.H./Exeter) contributed 15 and junior Brian Chergey (Bow, N.H.) chipped in with 13.

              The outcome also marked the first career coaching victory for PSU first-year head coach Damien Strahorn.

              Freshman Robbie Burke (Chesire, Mass.) led the Chargers with 19 points, converting 8-of-11 shots from the field.  Sophomore Corey Willis (Easton, Mass.) added 16 points, freshman John Roberts (Casco, Maine) was good for 15, and junior James Tobin (Brookline, N.H.) chipped in with 12.

              Plymouth State led nearly the entire game, but didn’t put the Chargers away until the final minutes of the contest.  PSU’s largest lead of the first half was eight points (16-8) with 12 minutes remaining, but Colby-Sawyer pulled to within one point three times, including a 33-32 margin at halftime.

              After Burke gave the Chargers a one-point lead to start the second half, PSU answered with 10 straight points to take the lead for good.  The Panthers extended the advantage to 14 points on a three-pointer by Chergey with 10:45 on the clock, but this time Colby-Sawyer scored nine unanswered points to cut the deficit to five points (61-56) with eight minutes remaining.

              That’s as close as the Chargers got, as PSU got the lead back up to double digits and didn’t allow the Chargers to get closer than eight points the rest of the way.

              PSU returns to action this weekend at the Rensselaer Tip-Off Tournament in Troy, N.Y.  The Panthers will face Paul Smith’s College in Friday’s 6 o’clock game.  Colby-Sawyer will play in the Rivier College Tip-Off Tournament this weekend. 

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