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CU's Higgins Reaches 1000 Points In Loss To Cards

Plattsburgh, NY – Matt Higgins became the 21st member of the 1000-point club for the Clarkson University Men's Basketball team, but the senior guard would have to do so in a defeat as the Golden Knights dropped a 71-65 decision to Plattsburgh State on Saturday afternoon. The Golden Knights fell to 3-7 on the season and will play nothing but Liberty League contests the rest of the way. The Cardinals evened their season's mark at 4-4. Clarkson hits the road to take on Vassar and Bard next weekend before enjoying a long stretch of home games from mid-January to the start of February. Higgins' 12 points pushed him into four digits for his career, but he actually elevated himself to 19th place all-time in scoring, surpassing Jeff Parsons (1002) and John Yacono (1005). The game was very even in the first half as the two teams exchanged the lead on numerous occasions and were tied 10 times. Clarkson enjoyed its largest lead of the contest (19-14) at 10:24 when Ryan Miles-Ferguson converted inside and the Knights still held the lead three minutes later when Higgins buried a 3-pointer to make it 22-20. However, Plattsburgh went on a 6-0 run in the next two minutes, and while the Cardinals relinquished the lead with three more ties in the second half they would never trail again. Higgins made a shot in the final minutes to pull Clarkson within one, but Nick DeAngelis hit one in the waning seconds of the first half to put Plattsburgh up 37-33 at the break. That shot swung the momentum in Plattsburgh's favor as Clarkson struggled to make shots in the opening minutes of the second half. The Cardinals took advantage, building a 15-point lead before the Knights finally scored on a shot outside of a free throw when Miles-Ferguson knocked in a layup at the 13:35 mark. Clarkson still found itself down by 15 at 12:18 (56-41), but the team began to chip away at the deficit. Higgins hit a jumper at 8:01 to get the Knights within single digits, but Plattsburgh always seemed to have an answer to keep Clarkson down by multiple possessions. The game tightened in the final minutes, especially when freshman Blake Gearhart hit a 3-pointer with 1:36 remaining to put the Green and Gold within four, 69-65. Neither team did much on offense in the final 90 seconds, but Plattsburgh recorded two more free throws to keep the Knights at a safe distance. Clarkson shot just 7-for-34 from beyond the 3-point arc and were outrebounded 46-33, but the Golden Knights' defense made up for both issues by forcing 21 turnovers while committing just 10 on offense. Gearhart and Reese Swedberg each scored 13 points to lead the Knights, with Swedberg also adding in nine rebounds and three steals. Higgins finished with 12 points and Barryn Shark found his teammates for eight assists. For Plattsburgh, Travis Cox had a double-double with 26 points and 10 rebounds, adding in four steals. Nick DeAngelis scored 25 points, shooting 8-for-16 from the floor with four 3-pointers.

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