POTSDAM, N.Y. – The Green Mountain men's basketball team struggled from the field and was unable to limit the opposition's offense in a 76-44 loss to Clarkson University in the consolation game of the North Country Invitational.
The Golden Knights moved to 1-1 on the season with the win while Green Mountain dropped to 1-2. Green Mountain will open up play at home on Monday when it hosts College of St. Joseph (Vt.) at 7 p.m.
Both teams struggled to find the bottom of the net in the early going, missing three 3-point field goals and turning the ball over. The Eagles were unable to take advantage of several second chance opportunities in its first four possessions before Clarkson's Matt Higgins finally broke through with a layup at 17:22 to put Clarkson on the board.
It wasn't until almost five minutes had elapsed when freshman guard Duane Goodman, Jr. (Charlotte, N.C.) got GMC on the scoreboard with a jumper. Fortunately for the Eagles, Clarkson had been unable to find the range up to that point and the Eagles only trailed 4-2.
Over the next five minutes, however, the Golden Knights went on a 12-0 run to take a commanding 16-2 lead with 11:48 remaining in the half.
After Goodman, Jr. hit on another jumper, Barryn Shark was inserted into the lineup for the Knights and immediately began paying dividends, as he dished out nine assists on Clarkson's 11 makes in the next 10 minutes as the Knights pushed out to a 32-13 lead, going on a 28-9 run with Shark running the point. Clarkson maintained that 19-point lead until the final possession when a layup and a free throw with one second to go by senior guard Diante Warner (Albany, N.Y.) pulled the Eagles to 16 at the break, 37-21.
Higgins and Malaquias Canery led Clarkson with 10 points each, while Green Mountain's Goodman, Jr. scored seven points, but the Eagles shot just 7-for-28 from the floor with 12 turnovers.
The Eagles' junior forward Sean Leflore (Moreno Valley, Calif.) made a 3-pointer out of the break, but cutting the margin to 13 was as close as Green Mountain would get. The Knights pushed their advantage to more than 20 before four minutes had expired from the half and the lead grew from there.
Three players finished in double figures for Clarkson, led by Higgins' 15 points. Roburt Welch tossed in 14 points by going 4-for-7 from the arc, while Canery finished with 10. Shark distributed 11 assists and also kicked in five points and five boards.
Green Mountain was led by Goodman, Jr. who finished with 12 points on 5-for-13 shooting and was named to the All-Tournament Team for his effort over the weekend. Warner popped off the bench for seven points while Alex Sanchez (San Fernando Valley, Calif.) led the team in rebounds with seven.