By Monica D’Ippolito
NEW PALTZ – In a close SUNYAC Championship game among conference rivals, the State University of New York at New Paltz faced a familiar adversary in No. 2 seeded SUNY Cortland Saturday in the Hawk Center.
The Hawks (23-4 overall, 18-0 SUNYAC) were looking to beat the Red Dragons for the third-straight year to collect what would have been their fourth straight SUNYAC title, but Cortland (23-4, 16-2) was able to pull the upset and earn a 57-52 victory.
“They played a really hard game,” said SUNY New Paltz coach Jamie Seward. “They beat us to a lot of loose balls early. They really set the tone, took it to the basket on us early… and we were really back on our heels for the first time, really in months. I think we settled in and at halftime, we thought we were where we needed to be… [but] we didn’t make that little 6-0 spurt to start the third quarter, second half like we had been doing and then it was just a fight back and forth. It came down to one shot going in either way, one call going in your direction and ultimately it wasn’t one thing, it was a bunch of things and they played very well.”