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Arnold leads Brockport past Plattsburgh 

Photo credit: Haley Brown via Brockport Athletics Flickr

The Brockport men’s basketball team continued to rack up reps in tight games as they edged out Plattsburgh State 67-66. It was the eighth game of the season for Brockport that was decided by one possession, as they’ve made close contests their calling card. The victory moves the Golden Eagles to 17-4 on the season and 12-2 in SUNYAC play.  

Tony Arnold led the way, scoring a season high 24 points, including the game winning basket and grabbing seven rebounds. Brockport was forced to play essentially shorthanded Saturday as Mekhi Beckett, battling an illness, shot 0-9 from the field and played only 22 minutes in the contest. Arnold’s big game was a welcome sight for Brockport who needed a spark without Beckett’s usual production. 

“I just wanted to get something going. He’s a big-time player [Beckett] for us and even if he’s out there and not really doing too much he’s a decoy for us and we used that tonight,” Arnold said. 

Brockport built a lead as big as nine with 6:13 left in the first half, but Plattsburgh rallied to knot the game at 33 at the break. Both teams traded baskets and leads throughout the second half of the game, but it was eventually the Cardinals who took a seven-point edge with just 2:41 left in the game. Colby Jordan would spark the final push from Brockport. 

“We were down with a short amount of time left. Coach [Greg Dunne] told us if we get stops, there was enough time on the clock for us to make something happen, and we did that tonight,” Jordan said. 

Jordan intercepted a pass and converted on a fast break lay-up to put Brockport down five. Arnold would follow suit on the ensuing position with a steal and a three-point play to cut the deficit to two. Brockport continued to apply pressure and forced a five second violation by Plattsburgh before Jordan converted another chance inside on a back cut to tie the game. The 7-0 run took just one minute, and six seconds and it was suddenly a brand-new game again.  

“I would say it started on the defensive end, without the defense we couldn’t have gotten the buckets,” Arnold said. 

Arnold would continue to score big buckets down the stretch as he gave the Golden Eagles a two-point advantage with 51 seconds to play on a tough finish inside. Plattsburgh arrived with a major response in the form of a corner three from Sheriff Conteh with 26 seconds left. Arnold would drive off a Beckett screen and finish a heavily contested lay-up for the final lead change of the night.  

The Golden Eagles had three others join Arnold in double figures as Jordan and Jahidi Wallace each scored 10. David Grady III added his fifth consecutive double-double, finishing with 11 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks. Jacob Oka added eight points and five rebounds in his fourteen minutes off the bench. Kevin Tabb led Plattsburgh with 16 points and several critical plays defensively down the stretch for the Cardinals. 

Brockport remains in sole possession of second place in the SUNYAC standings with four games to play. They trail Oswego State who continues to occupy the top spot amidst their 15-game winning streak. 

“Every game is important from here on out. We’re looking at Oswego, New Platz, Oneonta and Buff State,” Jordan said. “So those are really important games, you can’t look past those games and each day is very important for us.” 

The Golden Eagles will next be in action on the road Friday, Feb. 10 against Oneonta. 

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Mike Rose, Sports Editor
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