Five Panthers finish in double-figures in losing effort
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Lucas Hausman (Westport, Conn.) scored a career-high 32 points on 12-of-21 shooting to lead Bowdoin College to a 79-66 non-conference win over Plymouth State University in men's basketball action at Foley Gymnasium Tuesday night.
Hausman led the Polar Bears second half charge, as Bowdoin turned a 15-point halftime deficit (47-32) into a 13-point win. Senior John Swords (Sudbury, Mass.) had a double-double for Bowdoin, scoring 19 points (9-of-11 from the floor) while grabbing 11 rebounds. He also added four blocked shots. Junior Matt Palecki (Southborough, Mass.) contributed 13 points (on 6-of-11 shooting) while pulling down eight rebounds.
Plymouth State had five players finish in double-figures. Senior Alex Burt (Dover, N.H.), sophomores Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H.) and Ernie Johnson (Springfield, Mass.) and Little East Conference Rookie of the Week Brian Boulay (Keene, N.H.) each finished with 12 points. Burt and Johnson were both 5-of-9 from the floor, with Burt also grabbing a team-high six rebounds. Arsenault grabbed five rebounds. Sophomore Jack Preston (Nashua, N.H.) chipped in 10 points.
It was a tale of two halves as the Panthers used lights-out shooting to build a 15-point halftime lead. Plymouth State shot a sizzling 66.7% (20-of-30) from the floor in the first half, including 6-of-11 (54.5%) from long range. Great ball movement led to a number of open looks for the Panther shooters, as PSU recorded assists on 10 of the 20 made baskets.
The Panthers used back-to-back jumpers from Arsenault and Boulay, followed by a steal and layup by Burt, to spark a 22-10 run over the final eight minutes of the opening frame. Hausman accounted for eight of Bowdoin's 10 points, while Plymouth got eight points from Johnson, including a pair of threes.
The PSU lead grew to 47-28 with just over a minute left before the Polar Bears closed the half with a Hausman layup and two free throws from junior Jake Donnelly (Williston, Vt.) to trail 47-32 at the break.
The tide turned in the second half as Bowdoin came out of the break with the hot hand. The Polar Bears offense exploded for 47 second-half points courtesy of 17-of-25 shooting (68.0%), while the PSU offense cooled. Plymouth shot just 21.9% (7-of-32) in the second half.
PSU still led by double-digits five minutes into the half after junior Uche Nwokeji (Lynn, Mass.) hit a free throw for a 50-40 lead, but Bowdoin chipped away. The lead remained four or more until Palecki tipped-in a missed Bowdoin shot to cut the deficit to 56-54 with just under eight minutes to play.
A minute later a driving layup by Hausman tied the score at 56. The teams were tied at 58-58 and 60-60 before a Swords dunk sparked a 19-6 run for the Polar Bears over the game's final five minutes. Hausman had 10 points in the spurt.
Plymouth State (7-13, 2-7 LEC) will host Western Connecticut in a key LEC match-up on Saturday (3:00 p.m.), while Bowdoin (14-6, 4-3 NESCAC) hosts NESCAC-foe Middlebury College Sunday at 1:00 p.m.
-- 30 --