By Liam Sample
The Plattsburgh men’s basketball team (3-6) traveled to Oneonta (6-2) and New Paltz (5-2) for its second and third conference games of the season. In an extremely tight game against Oneonta, the Red Dragons won 73-83, and in an offensive battle the next day, New Paltz won 85-107.
Senior Sheriff Conteh said the team came into the weekend games “with energy” and looking to “execute.” Oneonta opened the first game with 12 straight points, according to Conteh, Plattsburgh came out “flat” because of being on the road, but added the team “turned it up a notch.”
The Cardinals did just that, cutting the deficit to four with 9:23 remaining in the first half. Going into halftime, the Red Dragons led 42-37.
The second half was tug-and-war between the teams, with Plattsburgh tying the game up at 59 with 10:39 remaining in regulation on a jump shot from sophomore Kevin Tabb. After that, both team’s pulled back and forth, for example, when Oneonta made it 69-64, the Cardinals scored to make it a two point game.
However, with 3:50 left, the Red Dragons began a run and built a 12-point lead with under a minute left, which Plattsburgh was never able to come back from.
Conteh said when the team got into the game after the slow start, the players saw that “we could probably win [this game] if we just buckle down, get a couple of stops and convert on the offensive end.” As the game progressed, Conteh described it as “tit for tat” and “as it got toward the end, we just tried to pull it away, but they came up with the win.”
Tabb, Conteh and senior Erik Salo all scored in the double-digits, having 13, 16 and 18 points, respectively. Salo also had 10 rebounds, making it his third double-double of the year. Conteh said having three scorers above ten points is “something that’s expected.”
The next day, both teams came into the game ready to score, after another close half of play, New Paltz led 49-41. With 14:48 remaining in the game, Plattsburgh was within seven points, but New Paltz began to run away with the game. Less than five minutes, the Hawks were winning by 18 as it held on to win.
“Offensively, we were good, but defensively, I feel like we could have did a little bit more, we could have been more intense on the defensive end,” Conteh said. “On the defensive end, we weren’t bad. But, at the same time, if you were playing offense and no defense, then you know the outcome of that.
Tabb scored 24 points in just 26 total minutes played, while sophomore Franklin Infante had a season-high 16 points.
Plattsburgh then played the No. 12 Middlebury Panthers on the road Dec. 7, where it lost 59-78 in a non conference match.
The Cardinals opens its home conference season Dec. 10 against Cortland at 4 p.m. and plays Oswego Dec. 11 at 2 p.m. Conteh says the team looks to improve on both sides of the ball and is “looking forward to keep executing our plays” as it looks for its first SUNYAC win.
By Liam Sample
The Plattsburgh women’s basketball team (3-6) had its first weekend on the road, facing two conference opponents on the southern side of the state.
The Cardinals opened the weekend with a Friday evening matchup Dec. 2 in Oneonta, falling to the Red Dragons (5-3) 34-55. The Cardinals then traveled to New Paltz and battled with the two-time consecutive SUNYAC Champion Hawks (6-3) Dec. 3. Plattsburgh nearly completed a fourth quarter comeback, but fell short in a 60-74 loss.
With it being the first time this season the team had back-to-back road games, it was a first-time experience for many of the new players. Senior Hannah Ruberto said being on the road was “good.”
“We have a lot of underclassmen so I think everyone was getting used to traveling and what the routine is when we do have away games,” Ruberto said.
In Oneonta, the Red Dragons scored consistently and went into halftime with a 27-18 lead and hung on to win in a defensive second half. While Plattsburgh had struggles with shooting, being 12-56 from the field, it allowed its second lowest total points in a game all season.
“During the game, our spacing went well, but we got our rebounded and their defense was something that we haven’t seen yet and they were able to shut down our offense,” Ruberto said. “I thought overall, we still played OK. It definitely wasn’t our best game, but it could have been a lot worse.”
Plattsburgh learned from this game quickly as it went into New Paltz and dug deep against a strong foe. The Hawks scored the first eight points of the game with Plattsburgh then going nearly score for score with them and being down 23-34 after two quarters.
New Paltz came out of the break strong and led 52-35 going into the fourth quarter, where Plattsburgh caught fire. The team went on a 15-4 run, cutting the deficit all the way down to eight with under two minutes to go. The Hawks were saved by the bell, as it went on to get the win.
Plattsburgh improved its shooting on the days prior by going 22-60 from the field, and had five players with nine or more points.
Ruberto mentioned how New Paltz blew out Potsdam, a team Plattsburgh lost to, by 30 points the day before this game and that the Cardinals “competed” with the Hawks.
“We were able to stay in the game the entire time and we kept it a close game all the way up until the end,” Ruberto said. “If we didn’t have that eight point stretch in the first few minutes, I think it would have been a whole different game.”
Plattsburgh’s next game was a non-conference road matchup against the Middlebury Panthers, where the team lost 30-65.
The team has its first home conference games Dec. 10 and Dec. 11 against Cortland (6-1) and Oswego (8-1). Plattsburgh looks for its first conference win in this stretch, with Ruberto saying if the team can perform like it did against New Paltz, “we could really compete the rest of the season.”