In their season opener, the Tompkins Cortland Community College men's basketball team saw 30 minutes of strong play undone in the final ten minutes of the game. It appears the lesson of needing to finish was learned. Playing at Schenectady County Community College Tuesday, the Panthers put together a full 40 minutes in a convincing 79-41 win. Both teams are now 1-1 on the year.
The Panthers outscored the Royals 41-20 in the first half and kept the accelerator down with a 38-21 advantage in the second half. Twelve different players scored for Tompkins Cortland, led by Jaiden Allen (Marlboro/Marlboro H.S.) with 16 points. Ja Don Crooms (Brooklyn/Boys and Girls H.S.) grabbed 8 rebounds along with 6 points and 2 steals. Omari Lane (Newburgh/Newburgh Free Academy) and Brandan Paul (Middletown/Progress H.S.) each had seven points and three assists. Shareef Ali (Queens/Martin Van Buren H.S.) and Derek Brower (Queens/Half Hollow Hills West H.S.) each had 8 points and 3 steals.
Next up for the Panthers is a home game against Herkimer College Tuesday. The men tip at 5 p.m.