Men’s hoops advances to semifinals

The men’s basketball team continues postseason play after defeating SUNY Fredonia and Buffalo State College on Friday Feb. 15 and Saturday Feb. 16, respectively, and SUNY New Paltz in the SUNYAC playoff game on Tuesday Feb. 19.

Geneseo hit 74 percent from the floor – a new school record – in the 98-80 victory over New Paltz. The Knights have the highest single-game field goal percentage in Division III play this season.

Prior to playoffs, senior Ryan Riefenhauser tallied 14 boards against Fredonia and Buffalo State. Riefenhauser stands in 17th place in all-time rebounding in Geneseo’s program history.

“Where he is right now on the rebounding charts is actually pretty impressive when you consider he transferred here and he’s done all that in three years,” head coach Steve Minton noted.

Sophomore Andy Drescher continued to impress beyond the arc, tallying five of nine 3-pointers over the final regular-season games.

Against Buffalo State, junior Connor Fedge held tight defense on senior Jake Simmons, who leads the conference in scoring. Simmons didn’t score until the four and a half minute mark in the second half and posted 15 points against the Knights, compared to his game average of 21.4 and high of 43. Junior Jordan Jones and freshman Connor Keenan also contributed to the successful defense.

Sophomore Gordon Lyons recorded his ninth double-double against the Bengals and netted 18 points against Fredonia.

Lyons “distinguished himself in the second half of the season in the SUNYACs,” Minton said. Minton gave the Buffalo native credit for recognizing what he is capable of and using that as motivation to see “what new bar he can reach the next time out.”

Lyons raised his performance in the quarterfinals game against New Paltz, scoring 22 points hitting nine of 10 from the floor. Lyons also grabbed eight boards and dished out four assists.

Three additional Knights hit double digits. Fedge alongside junior Thomas Decker and Jones scored 18, 15 and 13 points, respectively.

The Knights entered the playoff game with two victories over the Hawks from regular season play. In a pregame interview, Minton emphasized the importance of defense due to New Paltz’s “formidable” and “dangerous” team with a pair of seniors who “have the capability of scoring 30 points each on any given night.”

Seniors Matt Devine and Shereef Taylor tallied half of the Hawks’ points against the Knights – 24 for Devine and 16 for Taylor.

New Paltz completes its season 11-15 overall.

No. 3 Geneseo advances to the semifinals against No. 2 SUNY Plattsburgh on Friday Feb. 22 at top seed SUNY Cortland.