Arsenault, Johnson, Leroy all net 11 in league setback
KEENE, N.H. – Sophomore Ty Nichols (Springfield, Mass.) scored a game-high 21 points in 28 minutes to lead Keene State College to an 88-61 victory over Plymouth State University in a Little East Conference (LEC) men's basketball game Wednesday at Spaulding Gymnasium.
Seniors Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H.) and Ernie Johnson (Springfield, Mass.) and freshman Jaylen Leroy (Manchester, N.H.) all contributed 11 points for the Panthers. Sophomore Mike Osgood (Nashua, N.H.) narrowly missed a double-double, finishing with nine points and eight rebounds.
Arsenault connected from long range to put the Panthers ahead 11-5 early, but Keene used a 12-2 run to take the lead. Leroy connected from beyond the arc on back-to-back possessions to give PSU a 27-24 lead with six minutes to play in the first half, but again KSC responded outscoring Plymouth State 13-5 over the final two minutes to take a 44-36 lead into the intermission. Leroy sank a jumper to open the second half, but KSC senior Matt Ozzella (Medway, Mass.) scored on three straight possessions and the Owls pulled away.
Spaulding Gymnasium, Plymouth, N.H. – Wed., Feb. 8, 2017
Plymouth State 61, Keene State 88
Plymouth State 10-11 (4-7 LEC); Keene State 15-7 (8-3 LEC)
* Arsenault … 11 points, five rebounds in 15 minutes
* Johnson … 11 points (4-of-6), two rebounds
* Leroy … 11 points, three rebounds, two steals
* Osgood … nine points, eight rebounds, two assists
* Senior Nathan Clarke (Reading, Mass.) … four points, six rebounds, eight assists, five steals
BY THE NUMBERS
* The Panthers shot an impressive 60.0% (15-of-25) from the floor in the first half, including four long balls, but the Owls second half defense limited PSU to 7-of-30 and 1-of-12 from long range.
* PSU held a 41-37 edge on the glass, but the Owls outscored Plymouth State by a 38-22 margin in the paint.
HOW IT HAPPENED
* Arsenault's triple put the Panthers up 11-5 after the games first five minutes.
* The Owls used a 12-2 run to go ahead 17-13 midway through the opening half.
* Leroy tied the game at 24-all with a triple and on the next possession he connected from deep again to give PSU the lead.
* The two teams traded the lead, with a jumper from Johnson making it a 32-31 advantage with three minutes in the half.
* KSC closed the half with a flurry, scoring 13 points over the final two minutes to take a 44-36 lead into halftime.
* Leroy connected to open the second half, but Ozzella answered with three straight baskets to give the Owls a 50-38 lead after two minutes.
* Keene State maintained a double-digit advantage over the next several minutes and a 10-0 spurt by the hosts made it a 67-44 game with 10 minutes remaining and the Panthers were unable to get any closer.
* Plymouth State will be back on the court on Saturday, after Thursday's game with Newbury College had to be rescheduled due to weather. The Panthers will travel to UMass Boston for a key LEC game with tip-off set for 3:00 p.m. A win over the Beacons would move PSU into a tie for fourth place with just two regular season contests remaining.
* KSC will host Western Connecticut in an LEC match-up on Saturday with game time slated for 3:00 p.m. The Owls trail league-leading Eastern Connecticut by just one game.
-- 30 --