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Huge First Half Carries Bears Past Saints

CANTON - The SUNY Potsdam men's basketball team (2-0) scored 63 points in the first half en route to an 84-74 victory at St. Lawrence University (0-1) on Tuesday night. Senior captain Jayquan Thomas (Hollis, N.Y./Richmond Hill) had a game-high 21 points, while junior forward Brandon Segar Jr. (Jamaica, N.Y./Richmond Hill) (17pts., 10 reb.) and freshman center Tyrese Baptiste (Brooklyn, N.Y./Eagle Academy II) (10pts., 14 reb) each posted double-doubles. Junior forward Dante Viskovich (Massena) matched a career-high with 13 points.

Madrid-Waddington product Aaron Armstrong scored two points for the Bears.

The first five minutes of the contest saw the teams stay within three points of each other, but the Bears opened up a 29-20 lead with a 12-2 run capped by a Thomas fast break layup at 11:52. A three-point play from Luke Hicks concluded a 17-7 answer from the Saints and gave them a 37-36 lead at 7:01. Segar erased the lead with a 3-pointer 19 seconds later and Potsdam never trailed again. The Bears headed into the half with a 27-12 flourish and a 63-49 advantage.

With a 14-6 start to the second half, punctuated by a 3-pointer from junior guard Colby Simpson (Queens, N.Y./Richmond Hill), the Bears opened up a 77-55 lead with 12:22 to play. With a final charge, SLU battled back to get within 81-74 with 1:24 on the clock. However, the Bears defense slammed the door and didn't allow another point the rest of the way.

Simpson finished with eight points. The Bears outrebounded the Saints 40-35 and outshot them 43.1-percent to 38.6. Potsdam scored 23 points off SLU turnovers.

Hicks led the Saints with 20 points and Andrew Geschickter scored 14. Brandon Arnold and Miles Davis contributed 12 and 11, respectively. OFA product Cael Sargent started for the Saints and scored two points.

On Sunday, Potsdam heads to Northern Vermont University at Lyndon for a 2 p.m. contest.

JAYQUAN THOMAS SCORED A GAME-HIGH 21 POINTS FOR SUNY POTSDAM

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