October 19, 2021

Dragons split with Geneseo

Bob Ellis/staff photographer

Nicky Bonura, of SUNY Cortland, puts up a shot around Geneseo defender Tommy Eastman during the first half of the host Red Dragons’ 80-69 victory.

Justin Cooper scored 17 of his game-high 24 points in the second half Friday night as Cortland rallied from a 16-point deficit to defeat visiting Geneseo, 80-69, in SUNYAC men’s basketball action Friday night.

The Red Dragon women, meanwhile, lost to Geneseo, 77-52.

Cortland 80, Geneseo 69: Cooper was one of four double-figure scorers for the Red Dragons (12-6, 7-4 SUNYAC). He finished 6-of-12 from the field, including two 3-pointers, made all 10 of his free throws, and grabbed seven rebounds.

Carrel Joseph hit 7-of-12 shots with three 3-pointers and ended with 18 points, nine rebounds and three assists.

Zach Lydon matched his career high with 15 points. He was 6-of-9 from the floor, including 3-of-5 from the 3-point arc.

James Morales ended with 13 points, with three 3-pointers, and three assists. Michael Kelly dished out a career-high five assists and Brendan Fitzpatrick handed out a career-high three assists in 14 minutes off the bench.

Geneseo (12-7, 7-5 SUNYAC) was led by Justin Ringer and John Decker with 20 points and five rebounds apiece. Ringen hit 5-of-13 3-point attempts and led the Knights with four assists. Decker, who finished five points under his SUNYAC-leading 25-point-per-game average, made 6-of-12 shots overall and 4-of-9 from the arc.

Geneseo finished the first half on a 13-2 run to take a 41-35 lead at the break. The Knights then opened the second half on a 12-2 spurt, including two Decker 3-pointers, and led 53-37 with 15:11 remaining.

Cortland responded with a 13-3 run over the next four minutes to close within six. Lydon scored eight points over that span, including two treys. The Red Dragons still trailed by seven at 64-57 with seven minutes left before scoring 12 straight to take the lead for good. Cooper scored the first nine of those points on a 3-pointer, a 3-point play, and another 3-pointer, and Kelly nailed a three with 4:52 left to put Cortland up 69-64.

The Knights eventually closed their deficit to one at 70-69 on a Ringen 3-pointer with 3:04 left. Each team missed a shot on its next possession, and Morales buried a three from the right corner with 2:03 remaining to push the Cortland lead to four. Kelly followed that with a 3-pointer at the 1:17 mark, and Cooper made four free throws over the final 50 seconds to salt away the victory.

Cortland shot 48 percent from the field and 42 percent (13-of-31) from the 3-point arc. Geneseo shot 63 percent from the field in the first half, but only 38 percent in the second and finished at 49 percent. The Knights were 34 percent (11-of-32) from long distance.

Geneseo 77, Cortland 52:
Kara Houppert led five Geneseo double-figure scorers with 14 points and also dished out five assists as the nationally 23rd-ranked Knights remained unbeaten with the SUNYAC victory.

The Knights improved to 19-0 overall and 12-0 in league play. Cortland is now 8-10 overall and is now tied for fourth place with New Paltz in the SUNYAC with a 7-4 mark. The Red Dragons will host Brockport Saturday at 4 p.m.

Alyssa Crosby led Cortland with 12 points and three assists. She hit 6-of-11 shots from the floor. Stephanie Rice finished with 11 points, six rebounds, three assists and two blocks, and Danielle Levine ended with six points and a team-high seven rebounds. Kerry McHugh and Cassidy Chapko matched Crosby and Rice for the team lead with three assists each.

Houppert hit 4-of-8 3-pointers in her 14-point effort for Geneseo. Kayleigh Cavanaugh tallied 13 points, while Kelsey Poplawski made 4-of-5 shots, all from 3-point range, and finished with 12 points and six rebounds. McKenna Brooks and Bridgit Ryan each scored 10 points. Brooks led the team with eight rebounds, and Ryan handed out a team-high six assists and hauled in seven rebounds.

Geneseo shot 73 percent from the floor in the second half, including 9-of-10 in the fourth quarter as it turned a 12-point lead at the end of the third quarter into a 25-point final margin. The Knights finished 12-of-26 (46 percent) from 3-point land and 49 percent from the field overall. Cortland shot 40 percent overall, 44 percent in the second half, and was 6-of-15 (40 percent) from the 3-point arc, but allowed 15 offensive rebounds and was outscored 10-0 in second-chance points.

Both Red Dragon teams were to host Brockport today, starting with the men’s game at 2 p.m. and the woken set to tip off at 4 p.m.