This year in Geneseo sports: winter

The Knights look to win back the ball during a game against SUNY New Paltz. After another emotional year, the women finished the season with an impressive record. (Elizabeth Jacobs/Staff Photographer)

In a spectacular season for Geneseo, all seven winter programs made playoff appearances, with four claiming SUNYAC championships. By maintaining a powerful performance from every program of the winter season, Geneseo looks poised to win the prestigious SUNYAC Commissioner’s Cup for the third year in a row and the fourth in the college’s history.

Both the men’s and women’s indoor track teams went far into the post season, securing NCAA Tournament appearances by claiming SUNYAC championships. The men’s squad placed 10th overall, spear-headed by junior runner Isaac Garcia-Cassani, who claimed a national championship title in the men’s mile with a time of 4:07.77. 

The women’s squad took eighth overall, with senior jumper Alexa Wandy claiming national championship titles in both the triple jump and the long jump with a 12.64-meter mark and a 5.95-meter mark respectively. Head coach Chris Popovici was also named the SUNYAC Coach of the Year for both squads’ performances. 

The Ice Knights fell short this year, however, unlike their Frozen Four appearance in their 2015-2016 season—as the highly offensive team was held to two goals by the SUNY Plattsburgh Cardinals in the SUNYAC semifinals.

First-year forward Conlan Keenan merited the SUNYAC Rookie of the Year award, while senior forward Stephen Collins was named the SUNYAC Herb Hammond Men’s Ice Hockey Player of the Year, the United States College Hockey Online Division III Player of the Year, first-team All-American and runner up for the Sid Watson Award for best player overall in Division III. 

The Ice Knights look to continue a strong surge in the program’s history and look forward to an improved Ira S. Wilson arena, with $25,000 community contest prize from Kraft Hockeyville USA.

Both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams claimed a SUNYAC championship, which marks the 24th and 25th win for the men’s and women’s programs respectively. 

For the men, junior diver Samuel Randall returned to nationals to defend his 1-meter dive title, but fell just short with a second-place finish. The women also found success at nationals, as sophomore swimmer Nancy Nasky set a SUNYAC and Geneseo program record in the 1650 free, finishing ninth overall with a time of 17:04.51. 

Head swimming coach Paul Dotterweich was named the Men’s and Women’s Coach of the Year, while head diving coach Shawn Austin was also merited the Women’s SUNYAC Diving Coach of the Year.

For basketball, the men’s program fell to SUNY Oneonta in the SUNYAC quarterfinals, but put up two SUNYAC All-Conference Honors with senior guards John Decker and Justin Ringen, who were named second and third team by the SUNYAC respectively. 

The women’s squad once again met hardships this season, but pulled out a spectacular run from start to finish with an overall record of 28-2. Their losses only came in the SUNYAC finals and the third round of the NCAA National Tournament. 

The Knights dominated most of the season, and found themselves the highest rated team in the national standings, with 13 in Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Association and 14 in in program history, ending their winter season even stronger.