Men’s basketball on hot streak going into SUNYACs

The Geneseo men’s basketball team finished the regular season strong with a two-game winning streak to give the Knights the second seed for the SUNYAC Tournament. On top of that, senior forward Gordon Lyons was named a Capital One First-Team Academic All-American. This makes him the first two-time Academic All-American in Geneseo history.

Lyons has been the Knights’ best player this season as he has led in almost every statistical category for Geneseo including minutes played, field goal percentage, rebounds, assists and points per game. He has also led Division III in rebounds per game with 12.8 and has recorded the second most double-doubles in Division III, registering 22 in the 24 games he played this year. In terms of his assault on the record books, Lyons is currently third all-time on Geneseo’s scoring list with 1,609 points, second all-time on Geneseo’s rebounding list with 1,006 boards and has become one of only two Knights to have recorded both 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.

The Knights were able to defeat both SUNY Potsdam as well as SUNY Plattsburgh—the second-ranked team in the region. These wins came after a disappointing loss to SUNY Oswego in the week prior. Head coach Steve Minton said that one of the reasons for the loss against Oswego was because of the poor practice they had the day before.

“Most of the time in practice, we talk about effort and execution,” Minton said. “The night before the game, we practiced with not a lot of effort. We practiced like we had just played a game the night before.”

The games in the North Country were different for the Knights, as they were playing for a playoff berth. Minton said that he saw great defense in both wins.

“We defended much better. Gordon Lyons played well as well as [senior forward James McKenna] and [senior guard Andy Drescher],” Minton said. “We’re going to be very tough to beat when [McKenna], [Drescher] and [Lyons] all have big games.”

“The Big Three,” as Minton called the trio, totaled 46 of the 70 points for the Knights against Potsdam as they beat the Bears 70-59. The trio topped those numbers as they combined for 73 points against Plattsburgh, equaling the Cardinals’ total. All other scorers totaled seven points as the Knights won 80-73.

The Knights are heating up at the right time and Minton emphasized his belief that the team has a good chance to win the SUNYAC title. He also said that the teams vying for the title are at an all-around equal level, but that the Knights have been able to gain confidence with good wins as of late—going 7-1 in their last eight games.

“I think we’ve got a great chance [to win the SUNYAC title],” Minton said. “We’ve proven that we can win on the road having beating Plattsburgh, Oswego, Buffalo State, [SUNY] Oneonta and [SUNY] Brockport at their places.”

Geneseo begins their postseason against Oswego on Friday Feb. 27 at Plattsburgh.