Balanced effort leads Panthers to first victory
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Seniors Krystin Corliss (Loudon, N.H.) and Kait Deering (Sidney, Maine) each posted a double-double Tuesday evening, leading a group of five players who scored in double figures as Plymouth State University defeated Johnson State College, 89-72, in a non-conference women's basketball game at Foley Gymnasium.
Corliss scored a game-high 22 points and grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds while Deering contributed 12 points and 12 rebounds. Freshman DeAsia Lawrence (Middletown, Conn.) tossed in a career-high 17 points, sophomore Taylor Perry (Simsbury, Conn.) chipped in with 14, and sophomore Bry Bennett (Lancaster, N.H.) added 12 as the Panthers won for the first time this season (1-9).
PSU shot just 31 percent in the first half and trailed 37-31 at the intermission, but connected on 59 percent from the field in the second half, outscoring the visitors 58-35. The 89-point outburst was the most points in a game for PSU since a 90-46 win over Lyndon State College on Dec. 10, 2009.
The Badgers (2-8) also featured a balanced offense with four players scoring in double digits. Freshman Eliannie Sola (New Britain, Conn.) led the way with 17 points, junior Brittany Robertson (Burlington, Vt.) followed with 15, freshman Domonique Carter-Stanley (Norwalk, Conn.) added 14 points and a team-high eight rebounds off the bench, and classmate Kasey DeGreenia (Concord, Vt.) chipped in with 13 points.
There were three lead changes in the first half, with neither team leading by more than six points until the final minute. The Badgers went on a 12-2 run over a two-minute stretch to turn a five-point deficit into a five-point lead (31-26) with three minutes remaining, and got the lead up as high as eight points (37-29) in the final minute. Bennett connected on a basket for PSU to make it a 37-31 margin at the intermission. Robertson led all scorers with 10 points at the break for Johnson State.
PSU opened the second half with a 10-4 spurt to tie the game at 41-all. Then with the score deadlocked at 47-apiece, PSU went on a 15-5 run to take the lead for good with nine minutes to play, 62-52; Lawrence drained a pair of three-pointers to spark the Panther rally, while Corliss also scored six points and Bennett added a traditional three-point play.
Johnson State got the deficit down to six points a minute later, but Deering hit her next three shots and Lawrence added a bucket as PSU held off the Badger threat. The visitors got as close as eight points twice in the final three minutes, but the Panthers would not be denied, scoring the final seven points of the game.
The Panthers will try to build some momentum as they return to Little East Conference play Saturday when they host Western Connecticut State University at 1:00 p.m. at Foley Gym. Johnson State returns to North Atlantic Conference play Saturday with a visit to Lyndon State College for a 3:00 p.m. tip-off.
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