By Liam Sample
The Plattsburgh women’s basketball team (3-3) began its conference play in Potsdam, taking on the Bears (2-2) Nov. 29. The game was a consistent back and forth battle, but Potsdam emerged on top, winning 61-53.
The first two quarters were tight, after an opening quarter where the team’s nearly went score for score. A layup with 28 seconds remaining from senior Hannah Ruberto made the score 14-18 in favor of Potsdam.
Two minutes and 16 seconds into the second quarter, a jump shot from first-year Jaden Wilson tied the game at 18. Plattsburgh built a 29-24 lead in the next near five-minute stretch and went into the half leading by one.
“Our team did really well executing zone defense. That really kept us in the game because it allowed Potsdam to force up shots,” sophomore Payton Couture said. “It also allowed us to rebound well.”
Less than two minutes into the third quarter, Ruberto scored on two straight layups to put her team up 34-29. Slowly, Potsdam began to string together its offense and took the lead with 3:41 remaining in the quarter. The Bears held the lead going into the fourth quarter, where Couture said both teams faced a “decent amount of foul trouble.”
“Both teams both played in a zone to save each other [from foul trouble], so we did that,” Couture said. “Ruberto ended up fouling out and that affected us because she’s a senior and she knows a lot about what’s going on and communicates well.”
Potsdam went on an eight point run to begin the fourth and while Couture had four points in the quarter, it would not be enough as the Bears went on to win.
Plattsburgh has four different players with nine points and two with eight points, which shows its ability to diversify scoring. Couture said it’s good to see the team be able to move the ball around, allowing more players to contribute.
First-year Kourtney McCarthy nearly had a double-double, putting up eight rebounds and nine points. She scored 25 points in the team’s last game against SUNY Canton.
Couture said the team will look to “keep our heads up” as it travels to play Oneonta (3-3) Dec. 2 and New Paltz (4-3) Dec. 3.
By Liam Sample
The Plattsburgh men’s basketball team (3-3) opened its 2022-2023 conference season on the road Nov. 29, falling to the Potsdam Bears (3-4) 74-63.
The first half saw both sides’ defense shine in the opening minutes, with the score being tied at four 3:12 into the game. From there, Potsdam began to find its offense, going on a 14-3 run to build an 11-point lead.
A layup from junior Justin Blanchett broke up the opposition momentum and a sophomore Kevin Tabb layup over a minute later pulled Plattsburgh to a seven point deficit.
Potsdam’s offense stayed hot, as the team increased its lead to 14, Tabb scored the next seven Plattsburgh points, making the score 20-31 in favor of the Bears. The team went back and forth in the final minutes of half with Potsdam going into the break leading 41-29.
Senior Sheriff Conteh said the team had “good expectations” on the bus ride to Potsdam and said it was “good” to see shots go down in the first half.
“We spend so much time in practice working on shots, getting shots for certain people in certain spots. So that was good,” Conteh said.
In the second half, Plattsburgh began to chip away at the lead, cutting the deficit down to five with 5:40 left in the game. Potsdam rebounded and battled back to win the game by 11.
The Cardinals had a 40% field goal percentage in the game, shooting 26-65. From three, the team went 6-24.
“What was working [in the second half] was we were getting the shots we wanted on offense, some of them didn’t go down like we wanted to,” Conteh said. “Defensively, I feel like we were good, but we could have been better, meaning we could have communicated more and got more stops down the stretch to shorten the lead.”
Tabb continued his hot start to the season, having 18 points and five rebounds while playing 34 minutes. He has had 18 or more points in the last four games.
“We are all rooting for [Tabb] and that’s something we love to see,” Conteh said. “We keep encouraging him to take those shots and he continues to make it and continues to lead us on the scoreboard.”
Conteh tied his season high in points with 13 , along with putting up three blocks and three rebounds. Conteh said he was “feeling good” and wanted to give the team “energy so that we could go down the stretch and hopefully win the game.”
The team goes on the road, playing at Oneonta (4-1) Dec.2 and at New Paltz (3-2) Dec. 3. Conteh said the team will look to go off the mistakes made against Potsdam and try to capitalize on fixing those this weekend.
“Everyone keep supporting and go Cards,” Conteh said.