Cortland men’s basketball remains unbeaten in conference play after defeating New Paltz

Zach Lydon finished 15-of-20 from the field on his way to a career-high 33 points (Darl Zehr Photography).

Box Score

NEW PALTZ, N.Y. – Zach Lydon (Elizaville/Stissing Mountain) scored a career-high 33 points, 23 in the second half, as Cortland remained unbeaten in SUNYAC play with an 88-71 victory at New Paltz.

Lydon made 15-of-20 shots from the floor, 2-of-4 from 3-point range, and also totaled three blocked shots and five rebounds. Justin Cooper (Pine Plains/Stissing Mountain) added 13 pints, six rebounds and three assists, while James Morales (Mount Kisco/Fox Lane) and Nicky Bonura (Mount Kisco/Fox Lane) each finished with 12 points and five assists. Morales also had four steals and Bonura added four rebounds.

Tristan Wissemann led New Paltz (4-9, 1-5 SUNYAC) with 23 points and three assists. He was 9-of-18 from the field. Nick Paquette finished with 15 points and six rebounds, Dylan Balducci scored 14 points, and Matthew English pulled down nine rebounds.

Cortland (11-2, 6-0 SUNYAC) did not trail the entire game for the second time this season versus New Paltz. However, the Red Dragons only led 41-38 at halftime and by one, 47-46, with 17 minutes remaining.

Lydon scored six of Cortland’s next eight points as the Red Dragons took a 55-46 lead with 13:40 left. It was still a seven-point game at 61-54 with 9:13 left after a Jake Passaretti layup, but Lydon drained a 3-pointer on Cortland’s next possession, and the lead remained in double figures the rest of the game.

Cortland struggled from 3-point range for the contest at only 27 percent (7-of-26), but the Red Dragons shot 50 percent from the field overall (32-of-64) and 85 percent (17-of-20) from the foul line. New Paltz made 40 percent of its 3-pointers (8-of-20), but finished at only 41 percent overall from the floor. The Hawks were 7-of-9 from the charity stripe.

Cortland committed only six turnovers compared to the host’s 14, and the Red Dragons finished with a 23-6 advantage in points off of turnovers.

Cortland will return home to host Plattsburgh on Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Potsdam Saturday at 3 p.m. in SUNYAC matchups.

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