PAUL SMITHS - The Paul Smith's College men's basketball team opened the season with two Yankee Small College Conference games on its home floor.
The Bobcats cruised in their opener Saturday with a 100-28 victory over Hampshire College, then fell 116-80 on Sunday against College of Saint Joseph's.
Against Hampshire, the Bobcats utilized a full-court pressure defense to build an early lead. Patrick Wightman led Paul Smith's with 20 points and five rebounds, while teammates Adam Klock (15 points, nine rebounds), Devon Carr (14 points, five steals) and Shiva Senthil (13 points) each reached double digits in scoring.
Paul Smith's had a 54-10 lead at halftime.
"We got off to a great start early in the game using our full court press," said Paul Smith's coach Joe Akey. "The energy and intensity was where it needed to be, which helped us establish a solid halftime lead.
"The ball movement was good all day, and I liked how we used our defensive pressure to get out in transition and get some easy baskets. It was nice to start the season and conference play off with a win."
Things weren't as easy in Sunday's game against St. Joe's. The Fighting Saints went on a run just before the half, then continued the run early in the second half to take control of the game.
St. Joe's, which led 47-43 at halftime, held a double-digit lead for much of the second half then pulled away near the end of the game.
"I am really proud of the way my team played," Akey said. "St. Joe's is very good. Once we get to the point where we are able to play with the same energy and intensity we did in the first half, we will be fine."
Carr paced the Bobcats (1-1) with 27 points and four rebounds, followed by Senthil with 21 points and Wightman with 14.
Ramel Anderson posted 26 points and Rahiem Smalls had 23 points and six rebounds for St. Joe's.
Paul Smith's returns to action Thursday at Clinton Community College at 7 p.m.