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Panthers edge Hornets

Panthers edge Hornets

LYNDON CENTER, Vt. – The Lyndon State College men's basketball team couldn't overcome a nine-point deficit at halftime Thursday night, falling to Plymouth State University 68-63 in Stannard Gymnasium.

Eric Vargas (Lowell, Mass.) led the Hornets with 18 points, six assists, and two steals.  Charles Correa, Jr. (Prospect Height, R.I.) added 15 points, four rebounds, three assists, and five steals.

Jack Preston (Nashua, N.H.) tallied 15 points and eight rebounds for the Panthers.  Brian Boulay (Keene, N.H.) and Curtis Arsenault (Berlin, N.H.) added 12 apiece with Arsenault grabbing four rebounds and making three assists.

Boulay knocked back-to-back threes to give PSU the quick 6-0 lead, but Correa was quick to answer with his own back-to-back triples, knotting the score at 6-6. 

The Panthers capitalized on Hornets turnovers to build a 16-10 lead at the halfway mark of the first half.  The lead would stretch to 29-15 with 5:26 to play before the Hornets battled back to cut the lead to 36-27 at the break.

Just five minutes into the second stanza the Hornets cut the lead to 40-36 after a Robert Rouelle (St. Johnsbury, Vt.) trey.  After a layup from Preston, Raymond Monroe (Cranston, R.I.) hit a triple to bring the Hornets within three, 42-39. 

A 7-0 run from the visitors pushed their advantage back out to ten at 49-39, stopping the Hornet rally.

Lyndon continued to battle but were unable to get over the hump as they found themselves still down six with 37 seconds to play.  Arsenault went 3-4 from the free throw line in the final 30 seconds to help PSU hold on for the 68-63 road victory.

The Hornets (1-3) begin North Atlantic Conference play on Saturday at Colby-Sawyer College for a 1:00 p.m. tip.

The Panthers (3-2) travel to Rhode Island College on Saturday to begin Little East Conference play with a 3:00 p.m.