PSU Men’s Basketball hangs tough against #17 Eastern Connecticut

PSU Men’s Basketball hangs tough against #17 Eastern Connecticut

Osgood pours in career-high 38 points in LEC loss

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Mike Osgood (Nashua, N.H.) scored a career-high 38 points on 12-of-16 shooting, but Plymouth State University fell to #17 Eastern Connecticut State University, 85-73, in a Little East Conference (LEC) men's basketball game at Foley Gymnasium on Saturday afternoon.

            Osgood was spectacular, hitting from all over the court. He finished 4-of-5 from beyond the arc and 10-of-13 from the charity stripe, while adding six rebounds. With the setback the Panthers fall to 6-12 (0-9 LEC), while Eastern Connecticut wins its eighth straight to open the 2018 potion of the schedule, improving to 17-2 and remaining perfect (9-0) in league contests.

            Osgood and sophomore Jaylen Leroy (Manchester, N.H.) connected from long range to open the game, giving Plymouth a quick 6-0 lead. Another Osgood triple put the hosts ahead 13-7 after five minutes, but senior Kendall Marquez (Willimantic, Conn.) answered from long range at the other end, sparking an 8-0 spurt to give the Warriors a 15-13 lead.

            Osgood's third three-pointer of the first half evened the score at 17-apiece, but another 8-0 surge gave the Warriors a 28-19 advantage with nine minutes left in the half. Eastern pushed the lead to double-figures after a layup from junior Leonel Hyatt (Greenwich, Conn.) in the final four minutes. A Hyatt free throw with under a minute remaining pushed the advantage to 13, 46-33, but PSU forced a turnover and Osgood banked in a 25-footer at the buzzer to make it a ten point game, 46-36, at the half.

            ECSU used the three-pointer to pull away in the second half. After an Osgood layup, sophomore Carlos Gonzalez (Springfield, Mass.) hit from long range. Freshman Cory Muckle (Westbrook, Conn.) added two more triples as the Warriors pulled ahead 59-40 after five minutes. The ECSU lead would grow to as many as 24, 65-41, with 12:38 to play but the resilient Panthers started to chip away.

            Osgood sank a jumper and, after an Eastern Connecticut turnover, the 6-8 forward finished a hard drive to the basket for an old-fashioned three-point play. After a defensive stop, freshman Dimmone Marshall (Roslindale, Mass.) made a tough layup in traffic to pull the hosts to within 66-51 with 10:48 to go. Plymouth continued to claw back and was able to cut the deficit to single digits four times in the final five minutes, but couldn't get any closer as the Warriors held on for the win.

            Osgood topped the 30-point plateau for the second time in three games, while Leroy finished with 18 points and three rebounds. Senior Collin Sullivan (Plymouth, N.H.) dished out a game-high eight assists and added four rebounds and two steals, and freshman Sam Bonney-Liles (Hudson, N.H.) chipped in with seven points and a team-high seven rebounds.

            Eastern had four starters finish in double-figures, led by Gonzalez's 16. Senior Tarchee Brown (Rockville, Conn.) added 15 points and 10 rebounds, with Hyatt also posting a double-double of 14 points and 15 boards. Muckle finished 3-of-5 from distance for 12 points.

            Plymouth State travels to Pine Manor for a non-conference game on Tuesday (7:00 p.m.), while Eastern Connecticut will host in-state rival Trinity College on Wednesday (7:00 p.m.).




– 30 –