MacGregor with top performance for Panthers
KEENE, N.H. – The Keene State College men's basketball team outscored rival Plymouth State University 34-21 in the second half Tuesday night en route to a 71-61 Little East Conference victory at Spaulding Gym.
Junior Rashad Wright scored 14 points and grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds to ignite the Owls' second-half surge. Winners of the two straight, Keene State (11-4, 5-1 LEC) remains second in the LEC standings.
PSU ran off eight straight points to take a 36-29 lead on a run that included a long-range three-pointer from the top of key by Cloutier. With the Panthers up by eight 40-32 after a baseline jumper by Cloutier, KSC scored the last two buckets of the half, including a buzzer beating three-pointer by junior Ryan Martin that made it a 40-37 game at halftime.
Cloutier, who hit all of his four of his attempts, had 11 first half points for PSU, which hit half of its shots (13-of-26) from the field. KSC was off the mark behind the arc, connecting on just four of its 16 shots.
KSC got the lead back (46-42) early in the second half on a mini-run that featured a couple of crowd-pleasing dunks by junior Rashad Wright. Keene State used it defense to pull away from the Panthers midway in the half. A steal by junior Anthony Mariano led to a lay-up by junior Nicco DeMasco, and DeMasco's block resulted in a three-pointer by Martin that gave KSC a 58-52 lead at the 9:50 mark.
The pesky Panthers made one last run at the Owls. MacGregor made it a five point game (65-60) after hitting a couple from the line with 3:14 to play. Martin was fouled taking a three-pointer and hit all his attempts from the stripe to push the Owls' lead back up to eight points (68-60) with 3:02 to go.
After senior Ollie Hunter made one of two free throws, KSC got the ball back in the rebound action and DeMasco found Wright underneath for a figure roll that extended the lead to 71-60 with just over a minute to play.
Both teams return to LEC play on Saturday. The Owls travel to UMass Dartmouth and the Panthers visit Rhode Island College.
(Courtesy of Keene State Sports Information)
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