January 30, 2010


Dragons trip league leaders

BROCKPORT — After capturing an overtime basketball duel for second place earlier in the week, SUNY Cortland men came up with an even bigger victory Friday night.
With junior Dusty Marshall leading a balanced attack with 16 points, the Red Dragons knocked off first place Brockport 76-68 in a clash of the top teams in the SUNY Athletic Conference standings.
With six different players scoring at least nine points at Tuttle North Gymnasium, the visiting Red Dragons moved a game out of first place with their fourth straight victory. Coach Tom Spanbauer’s dribblers are 7-3 in SUNYAC play, 11-6 overall and winners in five of their last six outings.
Brockport falls to 8-2 in conference play, with both losses coming against Cortland, and stands 12-5 overall.
Marshall made 6-of-9 shots including a 3-pointer, grabbed seven rebounds and handed out three assists to go along with his team-high scoring total.
Sophomore Brian Manning came off the Cortland bench to add a career-high 14 points, hitting 4-of-6 attempts from 3-point range.
Freshman point guard Jesse Winter added 12 points including 7-of-9 free throw shooting and back-up frosh guard Jeremy Smith finished with 10 points.
Senior center Paul Oliver and junior guard Ron Evans each added nine points, while the Red Dragons dominated the backboards against a Brockport squad where no starter is over six-feet tall.
The Red Dragons out-rebounded Brockport 47-28, with Oliver getting to 14 caroms while senior Ben Nagle worked the boards for 11 rebounds. Nagle also had a career-best six assists while Cortland shot 50 percent as a team.
Gerald Williams paced Brockport with 14 points including a trio of 3-pointers. Francisco Lantigua added 12 points and four assists, while Brandon Williams was also in double figures with 11 points.
Cortland led practically the entire contest. Brockport held its final lead at 3-2 with 17:46 left in the first half. The Red Dragons established a 10-point lead at 20-10 on a Manning trey with 10:16 left in the half, but the Golden Eagles got back with 28-27 on a Josh Zenkel layup with 2:09 left.
The Red Dragons, however, responded with 3-pointers by Smith and Marshall, and a Marshall layup with 47 seconds remaining gave the guests a 36-29 lead at halftime. Cortland then started the second half on an 11-0 run, featuring five points from Evans and four from Winter, and led 47-29 with 16:04 left.
The Red Dragons’ largest lead was 50-30 after a Manning 3-pointer with 14:23 remaining, and the lead was still 16 points at 67-51 with 4:56 on the clock.
Brockport fought back from that point, eventually getting as close as six points at 72-66 on a Williams trey with 1:03 left.
Marshall, however, made a foul shot with 57 seconds left and a layup off a Nagle feed with 48 seconds remaining to help close out the win.
Part of Cortland’s shooting success including going 9-of-20 from 3-point range and 17-of-23 (74 percent) from the free throw line.
The Red Dragons, who beat second place Oneonta in overtime on Tuesday, plays a 4 p.m.