Second-Quarter Run Propels Middlebury Past Plattsburgh State

Alex Huffman had eight rebounds to go along with four points and four steals in Tuesday's win. (photo by Will Costello)
Alex Huffman had eight rebounds to go along with four points and four steals in Tuesday's win. (photo by Will Costello)

The Middlebury women's basketball team utilized a 16-3 run in the second quarter to pull away from visiting Plattsburgh State on Tuesday for a 60-33 win in Pepin Gymnasium. The Panthers remain unbeaten at 7-0, marking their best start to a season since 2010-11 when they went 6-0. Playing its first of three games in four days, Middlebury returns to action on Thursday when it hosts The Sage Colleges at 7:00 p.m., while Plattsburgh State (1-5) plays at the College at Brockport on Friday.

Tied at 8-8 following the first quarter, Plattsburgh State's Hanna Whitney knocked down a three-point shot on the opening possession of the second quarter. The Panthers produced the decisive 16-3 run over the next 6:16 of action for a 24-11 lead with 3:33 left before halftime. Six different players scored during the spurt for the hosts, as Emily Wander and Betsy Knox both had four points. A three by Anna Thompson cut the deficit to seven with 1:45 left, but a layup from Maya Davis and a three by Kira Waldman sent the Panthers into the halftime break ahead by a 29-17 count.

Out of the locker room, Middlebury continued to grow its lead, outscoring the Cardinals 19-5 in the third quarter. The Panther defense limited Plattsburgh State to just 13.3 percent from the floor in the frame (2-15) and 0-6 from three-point range.

The hosts were never challenged in the final quarter, growing their lead to as many as 27 (60-33) on a three from Wander with 22 seconds left in the contest.

A total of 11 Panthers found the scoring column in the win, paced by Davis with a career-high 16 points on 6-9 shooting to go along with eight rebounds. Wander and Waldman each finished with seven points off the bench, while Alex Huffman chipped in with four points, eight rebounds, three assists and a game-high four steals.

Thompson led the Cardinals with seven points, while Frannie Merkel and Theresa Quinn each tallied six. Taylor Clare yanked down eight rebounds to go along with four points and a game-best five blocked shots.

The Panther defense, which ranked ninth nationally in scoring defense entering the night (46.3 ppg), limited the Cardinals to just 33 points on 21.6 percent from the floor (11-51), and just 9.5 percent (2-21) from beyond the arc. Middlebury has held its opponents to 34 points or less in three of its first seven contests.