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Ludden holds on, claims showdown with Cortland

Gaelic Knights nearly see 18-point second-half lead vanish

— It was at this point that the game changed. Cortland closed the period on an 8-0 run, and opened the fourth quarter with a 16-7 spurt, so Ludden clung to a 47-46 lead with 3:19 left.

After Ludden made a free throw, Cortland came down and took its two cracks at the lead and tie. Both missed, and that was as close the Purple Tigers would get.

Dan Kaigler got loose on the baseline for a lay-up with 1:30 left to make it 50-46. After a pair of Cortland free throws, Littlejohn all but ended it with a fine pull up jumper in the paint with 53 seconds to play, yet another instance of the senior point guard delivering a big basket in the homestretch.

Cortland failed to score on the resulting possession, so the Tigers were forced to foul Kaigler, who officially iced it with a pair of charity tosses with 25 seconds remaining.

Kaigler led the winners with 16 points. Ben Hackett scored all 10 of his points in the second half. Antoine Montgomery came off the bench to score all eight of his points in the first half. Cory Paplawski had seven points, and Littlejohn finished with six points.

All of Cortland's points came from four players, each of whom reached double figures. Isaiah Prior had 16 points, with Brian Hughes adding 14 points. Josh Gutchess managed 11 points and Zach Whelan contributed 10 points.

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