Leroy, Osgood pace Panthers in LEC loss
GORHAM, Maine – Senior Zach Leal (York, Maine) led all scorers with 26 points to guide the University of Southern Maine men's basketball team past Plymouth State University, 63-58, in a Little East Conference (LEC) match-up at Hill Gymnasium on Wednesday night.
Plymouth State got 15 points apiece from sophomore Mike Osgood (Nashua, N.H.) and freshman Jaylen Leroy (Manchester, N.H.) in the setback. Osgood added six boards to his stat line, with Leroy connecting three times from distance. Senior Ernie Johnson (Springfield, Mass.) stuffed the stat sheet posting eight points, four rebounds, two assists and a pair of steals.
The first half went back-and-forth, with both teams holding a six-point advantage at one point. PSU trailed 22-16 with just under four minutes left before the break when Leroy's second triple sparked an 8-0 run for the Panthers. Junior Christian McCue (Hampden, Maine) put the Huskies back in front, 25-24, when he connected from beyond the arc as time expired for his only points of the first half.
USM used a 10-0 spurt to open up a double-digit lead, 40-30, six minutes into the second half, but senior Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H.) connected from downtown to bring the Panthers back and a long ball from junior Max Coleman (Londonderry, N.H.) cut the deficit to just two points, 51-49, a few minutes later. Osgood kept the margin at two moments later, but McCue hit from deep to make it 58-53 with four minutes to play. PSU would cut the margin to 58-55, but USM sank five-of-six from the line to hold on for the win.
Hill Gymnasium, Gorham, Maine – Wed., Jan. 25, 2017
Plymouth State 58, Southern Maine 63
Plymouth State 8-9 (2-6 LEC); Southern Maine 7-11 (2-6 LEC)
* Osgood … 15 points, six rebounds
* Leroy … 15 points (3-of-8 3PT), two rebounds
* Arsenault … nine points, three rebounds
* Johnson … eight points, four rebounds, two assists, two steals
BY THE NUMBERS
* PSU ended 20-of-61 (32.8%), while the home team finished 24-of-57 (42.1%).
* The Panthers connected six times from deep (6-of-17, 35.3%) and the Huskies made five triples (5-of-22, 22.7%).
* Southern Maine owned a 24-18 edge on points in the paint, but the PSU bench outscored their counterparts by a 17-8 margin.
HOW IT HAPPENED
* PSU jumped out to a 6-0 lead with five points coming from Leroy.
* USM pulled back in front, 12-8, with a 12-2 spurt. Ten of the Huskies' points came from Leal.
* The Panthers trailed by six, 22-16, with just under four minutes to play but Leroy hit from deep to spark a comeback.
* Arsenault completed an old-fashioned three-point play with a minute to play, putting Plymouth State in front 24-22, but McCue hit from long range to close the half for USM.
* The teams went back-and-forth through the first four minutes of the second half. Two freebies for Johnson tied things at 30-30.
* A 10-0 spurt put the home team in front by double-digits for the Huskies largest lead of the game, 40-30, with 14:20 left to play.
* PSU chipped away and a Coleman three-pointer and two free throws from Osgood made it a 49-46 margin with seven minutes remaining.
* Osgood hit a driving layup with 4:29 left to make it a 55-53 deficit, but that was as close as the Panthers would get.
* PSU is back in league-action on Saturday when the Panthers travel to UMass-Dartmouth for a 3:00 p.m. match-up.
* The Huskies also play an LEC contest on Saturday. USM will travel to Western Connecticut State with tip-off set for 3:00 p.m.
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