Men's basketball sweeps weekend to snap five-game losing streak, women split

The Geneseo men's basketball team ended its losing streak last weekend, defeating Plattsburgh and Potsdam at home.

On Friday, the Knights survived a roller-coaster game to come out on top by the count of 80-74. After leading by as many as 15 points in the first half, Geneseo managed a 39-30 intermission advantage.

The real drama came in the second stanza, as Plattsburgh emerged from the locker room with a stunning 26-9 burst over the first 9:37 of the half to grab a 56-48 lead. Not to be outdone, Geneseo responded with a 22-6 run of its own, claiming a 70-62 lead with 2:56 remaining. The Knights would not relinquish the advantage, nailing six of their eight free throws down the stretch to secure the victory.

Senior forward Scott Sciera led all scorers with 21 points, including a perfect 7-7 from the floor and 7-11 from the line. Head coach Steve Minton noted that Sciera's career game did not come as a surprise. "He's played well against Plattsburgh in the past, and we had a focus on getting it inside to him," Minton said. "He sees pretty well when he keeps the ball up high, as big as he is."

The win ended a five game, injury-plagued losing streak that sent Geneseo plummeting down the SUNYAC standings. After getting the monkey off of their backs on Friday, the Knights kept the momentum going Saturday with a resounding 85-59 victory over Potsdam.

After getting an early lead, the men never let the visiting Bears get close again, maintaining a double digit advantage for the remainder of the game. Sophomore guard Scott Morton contributed a terrific all-around effort, tallying 17 points, nine assists, and five steals. He was joined by five other double digit scorers, including Sciera, who had another stellar outing converting all six of his shots and finishing with 14 points.

The win, which moved the Knights to 14-9 overall and 8-6 in SUNYAC play, was the final regular season home game for the team's seniors. Minton reflected on their substantial contributions, stating that "They've worked hard for four years. They've been instrumental in our success and in helping bring the younger players along with how we want to go about doing things."

The Lady Knights, also playing their final regular season home contests, split their weekend matchups against Plattsburgh and Potsdam. In the Friday night game against Plattsburgh, they emerged victorious by the score of 76-70.

After posting a 13-point halftime lead, the team found themselves in a tight game down the stretch, as the visiting Cardinals closed to within two points, 66-64, with just over four minutes remaining. Geneseo allowed the visitors to climb no closer, however, claiming eight of the next 10 points and eventually winning 76-70. Junior forward Annie Verdino, the Knights' leading scorer on the season, lead the team with 19 points on 5-11 shooting.

The women were unable to continue their winning ways the following afternoon, falling short against Potsdam by the total of 85-78. The Lady Knights put themselves in an early hole, committing 11 turnovers in the game's opening 10 minutes on their way to a 42-25 halftime deficit. They would not fold though, improving their play in the second half and climbing to within five points of the lead with 3:27 left.

However, that was as close as the team would get, as Potsdam emerged victorious. Verdino led all scorers with 30 points on 10-23 shooting, adding 14 rebounds in the loss. Junior forward Amanda Haney also had a strong effort, totaling 23 points and nine rebounds. The loss dropped Geneseo to 13-10 overall and 8-6 in SUNYAC play. Both the women's and men's squads will head to Fredonia on Friday and Brockport on Saturday to close out their regular season slate.