PLYMOUTH, N.H. – The Keene State College men's basketball team was unable to hold on to a late lead and eventually fell 84-75 in overtime to Plymouth State University on Wednesday evening at Foley Gym.
- Keene State: 16-8, 10-3 LEC
- Plymouth State: 10-14, 2-11 LEC
How It Happened
Ty Nichols had 20 points, four steals, three rebounds and two assists to lead Keene State, but he was limited to 29 minutes due to foul trouble. Dizel Wright added 16 points, seven rebounds and a steal, while Jordan Haywood came off the bench to add 12 points, eight rebounds and an assist. James Anozie rounded out the double-figure scorers with 11 points. He added nine rebounds and an assist.
Jaylen Leroy and Mike Osgood singlehandedly carried Plymouth State. Leroy poured in 34 points on 13-of-24 shooting from the floor while adding six rebounds. Mike Osgood recorded a double-double, pouring in 30 points on 11-of-20 shooting to go along with a game-high 11 rebounds. No other Panther scored in double-figures, though Sam Bonney-Liles had nine points, six rebounds and two steals.
Keene State got off to a slow start, falling behind 10-2 over the first three minutes as Plymouth used a three from Bonney-Liles and a layup and dunk from Osgood and Leroy, respectively, to build the advantage. The Owls quickly answered, though, scoring ten consecutive points capped by a bucket and free throw from Nichols to lead 12-10 at the 15:06 mark. Plymouth scored seven straight to regain control. The Panthers led 21-19 with 8:36 remaining in the first half, but the Owls surged from there, scoring 12 consecutive points to take a double-digit advantage (31-21) at the 4:45 mark. Haywood had five points during the surge and Wright's transition bucket finished it. PSU got within 33-25 on a triple from Bonney-Liles, but Wright and Nichols shined down the stretch of the first half and KSC led 39-29 at the break on the back of 56% (15-of-27) shooting from the floor.
The lead quickly vanished to start the second half, as Plymouth used an 11-1 run in a span of just three minutes to tie the game at 40. Leroy started the half with a trey and, later, Osgood and Bonney-Liles each hit one of their own to even the score. The teams exchanged baskets from there and a jumper from Leroy gave the Panthers a 45-44 advantage with 13:58 remaining. DeVon Beasley answered with one of his own to give KSC the lead back, but the Owls were unable to gain any separation. Leroy remained hot, but buckets from Anozie and Nichols had the game tied at 51 with ten minutes remaining. Jumpers on successive possessions from Haywood gave the Owls a five-point advantage (58-53) with 6:42 to go. A free throw from Diallo made it a six point game again, but KSC could not extend the lead further and a three from Collin Sullivan had Plymouth back within one possession (59-56) with 4:23 to go. A layup from Wright and two from the charity stripe for Nichols provided KSC a three-possession lead (63-56) with just over two minutes remaining, but they could not hold on. A traditional three point play from Leroy and a jumper from Osgood had the Panthers right back within two (63-61) at the 1:21 mark. Diallo snuck behind the defense to score and make it a 65-61 KSC lead, but Leroy immediately canned a trey and Plymouth was within one. The Owls could not convert on their next possession and Plymouth was eventually fouled, but missed the front end of a one-and-one. KSC made one free throw and Plymouth missed again, giving the Owls the ball and a 66-64 lead with just 14 second remaining. Keene was fouled, but only made one of two from the line and Osgood hit a deep three to tie the game at 67 with eight seconds left. KSC was unable to get a look in the final seconds, sending the game to overtime. A trey from Ruay Bol at the 3:34 mark of the extra session gave Plymouth a 70-68 lead and the Panthers never trailed again. Keene State got within one, but deep shots from Osgood and Leroy made it 78-71 with 1:31 to go. The Owls never threatened again.
In the Paint
- Keene State will be the No. 2 seed in next week's Little East Conference Tournament and will host the No. 7 seed on Tuesday at 7:00 pm. No. 11 Eastern Connecticut clinched the top seed with a 106-82 win over Western Conn. State tonight.
- The Owls cooled off after a hot-shooting first half, finishing at 45% (26-of-58) shooting from the field. The Owls shot just 33% (8-of-24) in the second half. KSC struggled from three and the free throw line, connecting on just 2-of-15 (13%) from deep and 21-of-37 at the charity stripe (57%). Plymouth shot 46% (31-of-68) and made 12-of-26 (46%) from deep. PSU outscored KSC 36-6 from three-point range.
- Keene State narrowly outrebounded Plymouth 44-42.
- The Owls had won seven of the last eight meetings against Plymouth, including a 95-81 victory earlier this season in Keene.
- Keene State travels to UMass Dartmouth for their regular season finale on Saturday, February 17. The game is scheduled to tip-off at 3:00 pm.
- Plymouth State hosts Rhode Island College on the same day at 3:00 pm.