Women’s basketball ended their five-game winning streak this past weekend with two close losses to the SUNY Oneonta Red Dragons and SUNY New Paltz Hawks. After a win against the Buffalo State Bengals on Tuesday Feb. 5 to bounce back, the Knights have set their sights on the last four games of the regular season.
“Nothing’s really changed except for that this weekend was kind of a wake-up call,” sophomore forward Kerrin Montgomery said. “We lost the games, but we didn’t lose the season, so we have to keep pushing until we get there.”
Geneseo’s misfortunes began as they faced off against Oneonta in Schrader Gymnasium on Friday Feb. 1. Although the Knights had slain the Red Dragons 56-48 in a Jan. 11 match-up, Friday’s game turned into a defensive showdown and ended with Oneonta edging Geneseo out 44-42.
The defense-minded Red Dragons have a reputation for their ability to keep their opponents from the basket, but head coach Alyssa Polosky feels that the Knights made some of their own missteps in the match.
“I think our ability to score only 42 points was not necessarily because they did anything exceptional, but because we did things that kind of held us back,” Polosky said. “We missed a lot of points in the paint, we missed a lot of lay-ups and I think we got out-toughed a bit Friday night inside.”
After a pep talk from Polosky after the game with Oneonta, Geneseo managed to exhibit a stronger performance against New Paltz in their Saturday Feb. 3 match-up despite still falling short 73-64. The Knights opened by largely matching the Hawks’ energy throughout the game, with Geneseo scoring more points in the second and third quarter, while New Paltz scored just enough to edge the Knights out in the first and fourth.
Despite Geneseo’s ultimate failure to come out on top against New Paltz, the team came away with at least one highlight. Senior forward McKenna Brooks became only the 16th player in the program’s history to eclipse the 1,000-point marker. By the end of Saturday, Brooks came away with 1,009 points.
“McKenna’s 1000th point was so special and awesome, since that is certainly not an easy thing to do,” Polosky said. “To score 1,000 points means you also had to miss a lot of shots, so to put the ball in the basket that many times is really an incredible feat.”
On Tuesday Feb. 5, Geneseo took the chip on their shoulder from the back-to-back defeats to Buffalo to muster up a 68-57 victory against the Buffalo State Bengals. Geneseo led Buffalo State throughout the entire game, giving no chance for the Bengals to stage any sort of comeback. The Bengals, who the Knights also roundly defeated 84-66 on Jan. 29, barely stood a chance with the Knights’ need to prove themselves.
“This past weekend was definitely a tough one coming off the two losses, so [against Buffalo State] we all kind of felt it was more of a statement game,” Montgomery said. “We all knew that we were still in it and we wanted to make a point that we were in it until the end.”
Overall, Polosky believed that while the past weekend proved to be a letdown for the Knights, it also highlighted how the Knights should move forward.
“Unfortunately, that’s sports sometimes. You can do things 95 percent correct when they do things 96 percent correct and that can cost you a game,” Polosky said. “I’m hoping we can learn from those two losses and we’ve got four games left in the regular season before it’s go-time in the postseason.”