PSU Men’s Basketball wins opener over Rivier

Cloutier tops Panthers with hot-shooting

              CONCORD, N.H. – Junior Matt Cloutier scored a game-high 20 points Tuesday evening to lead the Plymouth State University men's basketball team to a 76-66 victory over Rivier College in the 12th  annual Jacob's Bridge Through Autism Classic at New Hampshire Technical Institute.

              Cloutier, a PSU transfer from NHTI, drained 7-of-9 shot from the field, including 5-of-6 from three-point range.  He was one of three Panthers to score in double figures as the team recorded the first career win for PSU first-year head coach Andrew Novick

              Senior Jesse Sabolis added 15 points for the Panthers, while sophomore Petey Skevas had a strong all-around game with 12 points, four rebounds and eight assists. 

              Sophomore Tom Poitras led the Raiders with 16 points, while classmate Jake Nelson added 13 points and junior Garon Whitney followed with 11.

              The teams traded baskets in the early-going and the score was tied at 19 when PSU went on a 15-5 spurt to open up a double-digit lead. The Panthers got the lead up to 15 before heading into the intermission with an 11-point margin, 40-29.

              Rivier played tough in the second half, pulling to within seven points on several occasions early in the half.  The Raiders cut the deficit to three points with two minutes to play, but Cloutier hit a three-pointer to stop the momentum and PSU went on to win by 10 points.

              The Panthers will be back in action this weekend at the Ken Wright Invitational, hosted by Elms College and Amherst College.  PSU will meet Amherst on Friday at 8:00 p.m. at Elms, with the consolation and championship games set for Saturday at Amherst. 

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