Women’s basketball drops two of three, falls to 5-2

Last season, the women's basketball team raised the bar by winning 16 games, the most impressive total since the '05-'06 season, and earning a postseason berth.

This year, the Knights are off to a promising 5-2 start. At times, though, the women have struggled to maintain consistent, championship-caliber efforts; something that is now expected of them.

"I'm very proud of this group of young ladies because they've worked very hard over these last two seasons to change the culture here in this program," said head coach Scott Hemer. "They expect to win every time they touch the floor, which is what makes up a championship program; however, what has happened is we have become complacent in the process of winning."

That complacency was evident at the Wendy's Classic Tournament on Dec. 2 and 4 when Geneseo dropped two games against Roberts Wesleyan College and William Smith College, respectively. Hemer didn't point any fingers, instead placing the blame directly on himself.

"Both losses last week fall solely on my shoulders for not having them mentally prepared," he said.  "Both games we came out slow, lacked determination and passion, and again, I think that falls on the head coach."

The Knights fell behind, 31-11 early in Thursday's matchup against Roberts Wesleyan, and though they came back to take a one-point, second half lead, they eventually fell, 67-58.

"I think we're absolutely right there in terms of being able to play with a team of [Robert Wesleyan's] caliber but we're just not consistent enough for 40 minutes right now to win games against teams like that," Hemer said.

Saturday's game against William Smith told a similar story as Geneseo trailed early but made a mid-game surge with the help of junior Katelyn Charbonneau, who made a career-high 20 points. The Knights's efforts were futile though, as they lost, 64-59.

The Knights nabbed their first conference win against SUNY Brockport on Tuesday, 61-52, but their efforts were again plagued with inconsistency, as the team had to overcome another early deficit.

"The best thing is we're only a quarter of the way through the season so there's no need to hit the panic button," Hemer said. "Anytime you're on the plus side [5-2 record] going into a break you have to feel good about where you're at. On the flip side, we have been very inconsistent game to game, even within games, and lack of consistency is not what wins championships."

Look for the Knights to remedy their inconsistent play on both sides of the ball, as they return to action on Jan. 4 at Alfred University.

"I believe we all want to see this team have a legitimate shot at the championship and if we are going to be serious contenders … then we've got to fix things moving forward and improve our consistency and again, the responsibility for that is on me," Hemer said.