POULTNEY, Vt. - Green Mountain rode a strong second half performance to a 63-44 non-conference road victory over Paul Smith's College in the team's season opener on Wednesday evening at Saunders Gym.
Junior guard Alex Sanchez (San Fernando Valley, Calif.) scored the first basket of the new season, but the Eagles quickly found themselves playing from a small deficit early in the game as the Bobcats hit on a pair of long distance threes to open the game.
Green Mountain (1-0) was slow to get its offense going in the first half, but its defense came to the rescue limiting quality scoring chances and gobbling up the Bobcats misses. Toward the end of the first half, the Eagles inched past the hosts and took a 26-20 lead into the break.
The Eagles gradually increased their lead to 14 with five minutes remaining in the game and closed out the game with continued solid defense.
Incoming junior Sean Leflore (Moreno Valley, Calif.) led the way for the Eagles with a great all-around game scoring 14 points and adding seven boards, four assists, four steals and a block. Sanchez and junior forward Matt Hess (Rising Sun, Md.) each contributed 11 points while being efficient from the field combining to hit 10-of-15 shots between them. Hess collected seven boards while Sanchez hauled in six. Leading the team in the rebounding department was junior guard De Shaun Carr (Moreno Vally, Calif.) with 10 board in addition to his nine points. Duane Goodman Jr. (Charlotte, N.C.) struck for his first collegiate points with nine as did Christian Przybyla (Clifton, N.J.) and Tyrell Johnson (Bronx, N.Y.)
Green Mountain's defense was able to limit the Bobcats to under 30 percent from the field while outrebounding the hosts by a 47-29 margin.
The Eagles will prepare for a weekend tournament in Potsdam, N.Y. Friday and Saturday as the team plays the host Bears on Friday at 8 p.m. then depending on the results play either Clarkson or Bridgewater on Saturday.