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SUNY Potsdam Holds Off Canton

POTSDAM, N.Y. --- The SUNY Potsdam men's basketball team (1-0) held off SUNY Canton (0-1) to take the 75-67 victory on Friday night in the Bears' season opener. Senior guard Jayquan Thomas (Hollis, N.Y. /Richmond Hill) led the Bears with 17 points, three assists and five thefts. Junior forward Joseph Werner (Valatie, N.Y./Ichabod Crane) led all scorers with 23 points and grabbed 14 rebounds for the Kangaroos.

The Bears opened up the scoring with a layup in transition from Thomas. Sophomore guard Quran DuBois (Niagara Falls, N.Y./Niagara Falls) followed it up with a jumper on the other end for Canton. The teams traded baskets until midway through the half when the Bears created some separation. A 3-pointer from junior forward Dante Viskovich (Massena, N.Y./Massena) at the 8:43 mark sparked a 12-2 run. Junior guard Zaavan Pedlar (Bronx, N.Y./Eagle Academy) ended the dry spell for the Kangaroos with a 3-pointer of his own with three minutes to go. After going back to trading baskets, the Bears closed the half with a seven-point advantage at 37-30.

Junior forward Brandon Segar Jr. (Jamaica, N.Y./Richmond Hill) helped Potsdam take the first double-digit lead (10) two minutes in with a free-throw line jumper. The Kangaroos battled back and cut the deficit to just three with a run started with a three from DuBois. At the 13:09 mark, another three from DuBois helped the Kangaroos get closer as they cut the lead to two. Like the first half, the Bears responded well with an 11-2 run capped off by a three from Segar that was assisted by senior guard Aaron Armstrong (Lisbon, N.Y./Madrid-Waddington) after the offensive rebound. In the later stages of the period, the Bears began to pull away as they took their biggest lead (16) with five minutes left. While DuBois' layup for Canton with 2:02 remaining got it down to single digits, Potsdam was able to prevent another run as they secured the 75-67 victory.

Segar Jr. finished the night with 11 points and blocked two shots to begin his NCAA career. Senior guard Danny Delsol-Lowry (Queens, N.Y./Queens High School of Teaching) added 14 points and grabbed five rebounds.

DuBois finished with 15 points, six rebounds and three assists. Junior forward Andrew Fitch (Melbourne, AAustralia/Heatherton Christian) and Pedlar added 10 points each for the visitors.

The Bears will be back in action on Tuesday at St. Lawrence University at 6:00 p.m.

ELLIOTT MASSIVE DOUBLE-DOUBLE LEADS LADY BEARS

CANTON - Sophomore forward Devyn Elliott (Bronx, N.Y./Cardinal Spellman) had a career-high 28 points and 24 rebounds as the SUNY Potsdam women's basketball team (1-0) overpowered Cazenovia College (0-1) 77-62 on Friday evening. The victory advances the Bears to tomorrow's championship game of the SUNY Canton Kevin Fee Roos Classic. Sophomore guard Dyamon Hunter (Bronx, N.Y./Thurgood Marshall Academy) had 19 points and five steals, while freshman forward Jakia Howard (Syracuse, N.Y./Nottingham) posted a double-double of 10 points and 15 rebounds in her collegiate debut.

The teams battled evenly throughout the first quarter, but the Bears scored the last four points and held a 17-14 lead after 10 minutes. Elliott had six of the 17 points and Hunter scored four. Freshman guard Bella Barner (Liverpool, N.Y./Liverpool) hit a three and Howard and freshman guard Caroline LaFountain (Saratoga Springs, N.Y./Saratoga Springs) each had a bucket.

The Wildcats opened the second quarter with four points to briefly take an 18-17 lead, but Potsdam countered with a 13-2 run for a 30-20 advantage at the 4:35 mark. Elliott scored six more during the stretch and LaFountain had another four. Danielle Caivana got Cazenovia within three after scoring the next seven straight on a three and four free throws. Potsdam outscored the Wildcats 8-5 the rest of the half and took a 38-32 lead into the break. Barner and Elliott each drained threes in the closing minutes.

Cazenovia hung with the Bears over the first three minutes of the second half and an Alexis Tubbs made it a 44-40 at the 6:54 mark. Potsdam took off again with another 9-0 run for a 53-40 lead at 4:13, capped by a Hunter 3-pointer. The teams matched each other in scoring the rest of the way, but Hunter drained another three with four seconds left and the Bears took a 60-47 lead into the final quarter.

Potsdam put the game away with a 15-9 start to the final 10 minutes. Elliott sank a layup with 2:40 left to give the Bears their biggest lead of the contest at 75-56. The Wildcats finished with a 6-2 flourish, but ran out of time as Potsdam closed out the 15-point win.

Potsdam dominated the glass on the night, outrebounding Cazenovia 67-35. LaFountain and Barner each finished with nine points in the first college action.

Caivana led the Wildcats with 26 points and Amy Holland chipped in 11. Tubbs posted seven points and seven boards.

The Bears face the U.S. Coast Guard Academy at 3 p.m. in the championship game tomorrow afternoon.



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