DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Sophomore Nick Portelance's (Fairhaven, Mass.) 17 points led three Corsairs in double-figures, but Plymouth State overcame the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth midway through the second half to wrap up a 70-67 victory at the Tripp Athletic Center on Saturday afternoon.
Score: Plymouth State 70, UMass Dartmouth 67
Records: Plymouth State (9-9, 3-6 LEC) | UMass Dartmouth (12-7, 6-3 LEC)
How it Happened
A sharpshooting 15-of-31 (48 percent) from the field in the first half gave UMass Dartmouth a 37-29 lead at the break. Just under a minute into the second half, Portelance converted on the low block to extend the Corsair lead up to its summit of 12 points, but the advantage quickly evaporated. Plymouth State reeled off a 14-5 run over the next seven minutes, capped by a layup from Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H.) to narrow the UMass Dartmouth lead down to three points.
From that point on, the Panthers would slowly chip away at the Corsair lead, and eventually knotted the score at 53-all on a Ryan Smith (Melrose, Mass.) layup with 8:35 to go in regulation. Forty seconds later, Smith converted his second free throw to give the Panthers their first lead of the evening. UMass Dartmouth kept the game close, but 22 second-half points from the Plymouth State bench proved too much to overcome.
Down just three with 1:12 remaining, the Corsairs would have their chance as time ticked away. After Plymouth State left the door open with missed foul shots at 19 seconds, UMass Dartmouth could not convert a shot to force extra minutes, seeing narrow misses on two long-range baskets in the final five seconds.
Inside the Numbers
- Portelance pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to go along with his 17 points for his third straight double-double and eighth this season.
- Sophomore Arinze Obiora (Hyde Park, Mass.) scored eight of his 10 second half points from the charity stripe and finished with 16 on the evening in his first start of the season.
- Senior Abi Akanni (Fitchburg, Mass.) rounded out the Corsairs in double-figures, dropping 10 points, all in the first half.
- The combination of Jaylen Leroy (Manchester, N.H.) and Arsenault scored 28 of the 42 second half points for the Panthers to complete the comeback.
- UMass Dartmouth controlled the paint on the evening, out-rebounding the Panthers 40-33 and scoring the visitors 34-28 in the paint.
- In the second half of play, Plymouth State saw 22 points come from their bench, while UMass Dartmouth was able to generate just one.
- Plymouth State also had three players reach double-figures, as Arsenault, Leroy and Mike Osgood (Nashua, NH) poured in 21, 13 and 12, respectively.
- The Panthers snap a three-game losing skid to UMass Dartmouth, with their last win coming in an 88-87 overtime decision on Jan. 24, 2015.
The Corsairs are back in action as they host No. 4 Tufts on Tuesday night for a 7:30 p.m. tip off. The Panthers host Pine Manor next Thursday night at 7:00 p.m.