After losing its last two games by close margins, the Geneseo men's basketball team has started the season 0-3.
On Nov. 18, the Knights took on St. Joseph's College and fell, 72-81. Sophomore forward Jordan Jones led the team with 19 points and brought down six rebounds. Freshman forward James McKenna came off the bench to add 15 points and seven rebounds.
Inconsistent shooting combined with lackluster defense on the perimeter, however, was Geneseo's downfall against St. Joseph's. Geneseo was just 36 percent from the field and 20 percent from deep, while St. Joe's made 10 three-pointers throughout the game and were also 21-27 from the free-throw line.
"We didn't shoot very well in both games and we were under 50 percent from the free throw line. You shoot 15-20 from the line, it's an entirely different game," Minton explained.
The turning point in the game came with one minute left in the first half. Up by eight points, Geneseo turned the ball over and St. Joe's came down to score. By halftime, the Knights were holding on to just a one-point lead.
"Turnovers really hurt us in this game," coach Minton said after the game.
On Nov. 19, Geneseo went on to play Worcester State and took them to overtime before losing, 76-83. Jones led the team in scoring again with 23 points. McKenna had another solid game coming off the bench with 15 points, but got into foul trouble in the second half and only played 15 minutes. Freshman Andy Drescher also contributed from the bench with 11 points in 12 minutes of action.
Although as a team Geneseo shot more efficiently throughout the game – 45 percent from the field – so did Worcester, who shot 54.5 percent.
"Again, we didn't shoot well from the line," Minton said. "If we make just one more of those, it's obviously a different game."
The difference in overtime came when Geneseo went just 2-7 from the field, and just 1-6 from the free throw line.
"The game was a lot closer than the final score showed. By the end of the game we were fouling to try to get back in it and they didn't miss free throws," Minton said.
This weekend the Knights will continue the Wendy's Classic before taking on SUNY Cortland on Dec. 6.
"It's a great tournament. The competition is unreal of Division III basketball," Minton said. "It only makes us better for when league games come around."