LeRoy nails six three-pointers in 31-point effort
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Jaylen LeRoy (Manchester, N.H.) matched a career-high with six made three-pointers as part of a 31-point effort as Plymouth State University held off Framingham State University, 91-85, in a non-conference men's basketball game at Foley Gymnasium on Saturday night.
LeRoy eclipsed the 30-point threshold for the first time this season as the Panthers controlled play through the first half, taking a 49-37 lead into the intermission. PSU pushed the advantage to as much as 17 points midway through the second half before the Rams mounted a comeback, whittling the lead all the way down to four (82-78) with two minutes to play. Sophomore Sam Bonney-Liles (Hudson, N.H.) drained a clutch triple and freshman Manny Sanchez (Lawrence, Mass.) came up with a key steal as the Panthers were able to hold on for the win.
The Panthers improve to 7-4, while Framingham State drops its 11th straight game to fall to 1-11 on the season.
The Final Score:
Plymouth State 91, Framingham State 85
Plymouth State (7-4)
Framingham State (1-11)
How it Happened:
* The two teams traded baskets over the first four minutes until LeRoy's first three-pointer gave PSU a 10-8 lead. Moments later Bonney-Liles swished a triple from the right corner to extend the advantage to 15-8.
* Senior Manny Payton (Fitchburg, Mass.) hit from inside to pull the Rams to within 24-21 midway through the first half, but the Panthers answered with seven straight points to push the lead to double figures.
* LeRoy heated up from distance, sinking three straight triples as Plymouth State maintained the lead, 37-28, with just under six minutes left in the first half.
* Freshman Dante Rivera (Methuen, Mass.) connected on a driving scoop shot to make it 46-35 in the final minute and junior Joe Simpson (Manchester, N.H.) hit three straight free throws to give PSU a 49-37 lead at the break.
* The Panthers controlled play through the first ten minutes of the second half, with LeRoy connecting two more times from distance to give PSU its biggest lead of the evening, 73-56, with 8:51 remaining.
* Framingham State started chipping away from there. An 11-3 spurt, capped by a triple from sophomore Trevor Manyak (Bolton, Mass.), pulled FSU to within nine points, 76-67, with six minutes to play.
* The Rams kept the pressure on and Payton hit a driving layup in traffic to make it 82-78 with two minutes remaining, but LeRoy broke the press and dished to Bonney-Liles in the right corner for a clutch three-pointer on the Panthers' next possession.
* Senior Khaneil Bruce (Cambridge, Mass.) collected an offensive rebound and scored on the put-back to pull Framingham within five, 87-82, with just over a minute to play and FSU forced a stop on the defensive end, but freshman Sanchez was able to poke the ball away and the Panthers iced the game at the free throw line.
Inside the Numbers:
* LeRoy's 31 points were his most since last February, when he poured in 34 points in an overtime win against Keene State, and his six made three-pointers matched a career-high.
* Rivera finished with 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting, while Bonney-Liles came off the bench to contribute 16 points and five rebounds.
* Framingham State got a 30-point effort from Payton, who added five assists to his line, while sophomore Cameren McCloud-Thomas (Springfield, Mass.) chipped in with 13 points. Bruce posted a double-double of 12 points and a game-high 13 rebounds in the losing effort.
* FSU held a 52-34 edge on the boards, but the Panthers turned 17 Rams' turnovers into 15 points.
Straight from the Coach's Mouth:
"It was good to start the semester with a win against a very physical Framingham team," said head coach Andrew Novick. "We will need to play more consistent on Saturday against a very talented Rhode Island College team."
* PSU gets back into Little East Conference (LEC) action on Saturday (Jan. 5) with a 3:00 p.m. clash with the Anchormen.
* The Rams open Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) play on Saturday (Jan. 5) with a home contest against Fitchburg State (3:00 p.m.).
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