Panthers show balanced effort in setback against former coach
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Sophomore Chris Hudnut (Chevy Chase, Md.) posted a double-double with game-highs of 21 points and 12 rebounds Tuesday afternoon as Colby College knocked off Plymouth State University, 66-51, in a New Year's Eve men's basketball matinee at Foley Gymnasium.
Hudnut made 9-of-14 attempts from the field while also blocking four shots at the other end of the court. Classmate Ryan Jann (Westford, Mass.) added 14 points for the visitors as the Mules (5-3) made it a triumphant return for their coach Damien Strahorn, who was Plymouth State's head coach in the 2010-11 season.
The Panthers had a balanced offensive attack with four players combining for 40 points. Freshman Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H./Phillips Exeter) scored a team-high 11 points, followed by sophomore Uche Nwokeji (Lynn, Mass.) and junior Alex Burt (Dover, N.H.) with 10 each and senior Petey Skevas (Wethersfield, Conn.) with nine. Nwokeji pulled down a team-high nine rebounds but the Panthers fell to 6-4.
PSU held a one-point lead (15-14) midway through the first half before Colby went on a 15-3 spurt over the next five minutes to open up an 11-point margin, 29-18. Jann, sophomore Patrick Stewart (Bangor, Maine) and junior Connor O'Neil (Freeport, Mass.) each hit three-pointers for Colby in the surge. PSU got back to within seven points, but the Mules took a 10-point margin (38-28) into the break.
Plymouth State whittled the deficit down to six points (46-40) with 14 minutes to play in the second half, but back-to-back jumpers by sophomore Sam Willson (Watertown, Conn.) pushed the lead back up to 10 points and the visitors maintained a double digit margin the rest of the way.
PSU returns to Little East Conference play on Saturday, hosting Eastern Connecticut State University at 3:00 p.m. at Foley Gym. Colby returns home to host UMaine Machias Saturday at 4:00 p.m.
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