Leroy matches career-high as Panthers downed by late FTs
DANBURY, Conn. – Sophomore Jaylen Leroy (Manchester, N.H.) matched a career-high with 35 points but junior Tyler Rowe (East Hartford, Conn.) canned a pair of free throws with nine seconds remaining to lift the Western Connecticut State University men's basketball team to a dramatic 59-58 win over Plymouth State University in a Little East Conference (LEC) game at Feldman Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Leroy has reached the 30-point mark in each of his last three games and shot an even 50% from the field (12-of-24), while draining six three-pointers as PSU falls to 6-6 overall (0-3 LEC).
Rowe finished with a team-high 27 points to help WCSU even its record at 6-6 while remaining unbeaten in league play (3-0).
The contest was tight for much of the first half, with Plymouth State holding the largest advantage, four points, following a layup by junior Mike Osgood (Nashua, N.H.) with 15:21 remaining in the stanza.
Western Connecticut led by four points with 1:28 left before intermission, but Leroy capped the half with one of his six three-pointers to make the halftime deficit just a single point, 29-28.
WCSU appeared to be running away in the second half, building a lead of as many as 14 points, 52-38, following a long triple from sophomore Evan Curtin (Portland, Conn.) with 9:27 remaining in the game. PSU marched back and Leroy capped a 20-3 run by connecting from beyond the arc once more to give Plymouth the lead, 58-55, with 2:47 left to play
Junior Rashard Rodriguez (Trumbull, Conn.) made a layup to cut the margin to one, 58-57, with 1:44 left, setting up Rowe's free throws to clinch the win.
Osgood finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds, while adding four assists. Junior Chris Calnan (Wakefield, Mass.) chipped in with eight rebounds and four assists, with senior Kieran Beck (Danvers, Mass.) contributing seven rebounds and four assists.
The Panthers remain in LEC play as they host UMass Boston on Wednesday. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
– 30 –
** With contributions from Western Connecticut Sports Information **