October 23, 2021

Red Dragon men, women fall to Ithaca

NCAA Division III Basketball

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Riley Thompson hit a 3-pointer with 2:50 left to give Ithaca the lead for good and the visiting Bombers held on to defeat Cortland, 77-74, in a non-league men’s basketball contest Tuesday inside Corey Gymnasium.

The Red Dragon women fell 70-59 in Ithaca to the Bombers.

Ithaca College men 77, Cortland 74:

Thompson, Jake Mitchell and Jack Stern led Ithaca (2-1) with 14 points apiece. Sebastian Alderete finished with 11 points, 16 rebounds and four steals. He grabbed a board and was fouled with eight seconds left after Cortland missed a potential go-ahead layup down 75-74. Alderete made both free throws, and Skylar Sinon’s steal with a second remaining sealed the Ithaca win. Sinon ended the game with nine assists, four steals, five rebounds and seven points.

Eric Edwards led Cortland (1-1) with 27 points and three blocks and also added seven rebounds. He was 8-for-11 from the field and 10-for-11 from the foul line. Austin Grunder finished with 17 points and 20 rebounds – the most rebounds in a game by a Cortland player since Frank Hodge’s 20 caroms in a win at Ithaca on Feb. 4, 1997.

Jake DiSanto and Ryan Schmadel each scored nine points. Schmadel made three of Cortland’s nine 3-pointers, while DiSanto and Grunder each hit two treys. Brendan Fitzpatrick totaled four assists and Ricardo Dominguez handed out three assists.

Ithaca led 44-40 after a first half that featured eight lead changes and three ties. The Bombers opened the second half on a 16-4 run, capped by a Clay Medling 3-pointer, to take its largest lead of the game at 56-44 with 15:49 remaining.

Cortland, however, fired back with a 13-0 run over the next 3:46 to take the lead. Edwards scored 11 of those points, including two free throws to put the Red Dragons up 57-56 with 12:03 left.

The Red Dragons led 73-67 with 5:37 remaining after Edwards was fouled shooting a 3-pointer and made all three free throws. Stern’s 3-point play with 5:03 left cut the Cortland lead in half, and he made two foul shots with 3:52 left to make it 73-72. Thompson’s long 3-pointer at the 2:50 mark put Ithaca on top.

Edwards hit the first of two free throws with 56.4 seconds left to cut Ithaca’s lead to one. Ithaca missed a 3-pointer with 24.5 seconds left on an airball as the shot clock expired. Cortland called timeout with 20.9 seconds left, and Grunder’s contested driving layup came up just short with 10 seconds left. After Alderete made his free throws, Cortland quickly raced the ball up court before Sinon made the game-clinching steal.

Cortland shot 38 percent overall and 39 percent (9-of-23) from 3-point range. The Red Dragons connected on 19-of-23 free throws. Ithaca finished at 33 percent overall and 23 percent (9-of- 39) from long distance. The Bombers made 16 of their 20 foul shots. Ithaca held a 23-11 advantage in points off of turnovers as Cortland committed 19 giveaways compared to Ithaca’s nine.

Cortland will play at Division I Colgate University Thursday at 7 p.m. in a game that is an exhibition for Cortland but counts for Colgate.

Ithaca College women 70, Cortland 59:

Nationally 22nd-ranked Ithaca outscored Cortland 18-2 over the final five minutes and 43 seconds to erase a five-point deficit and the Bombers defeated the Red Dragons, 70-59, in a non-league contest.

Grace Cannon led Ithaca (1-1) with 26 points, 11 rebounds and three assists. She made 10-of-18 field goals and 6-of-7 free throws. Cassidy O’Malley added 18 points and 12 rebounds Casey Travers was one of four double-figure scorers for Cortland (2-1) with 14 points, including three 3-pointers. Beth Bonin also hit three treys and finished with 13 points and six rebounds. Sarah Tully registered a double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds and Nyia Longford scored 12 points.

Cortland led 26-19 with 3:35 left in the first half before the Bombers scored the final five points to pull with 26-24 at the break. Ithaca opened up a 10- point lead twice in the last two minutes of the third quarter, the last at 48-38 on a Natalie Smith layup with 1:12 left. Cortland, however, used a Travers 3-pointer, a Bonin jumper, and a Travers three as the period ended to cut its de cit to 48-46 entering the fourth.

A Longford 3-pointer with 6:59 remaining and two Shannon McGuire free throws at the 5:56 mark gave Cortland a 57-52 lead. An O’Malley layup, two Cannon free throws and a Cannon layup reestablished the lead for Ithaca at 58-57 with 4:25 left.

The teams combined for only two points over the next two-plus minutes –– an O’Malley layup with 2:45 left. The Red Dragons trailed by three when Cannon got a steal and layup with 1:56 left. Cortland missed 3-pointers on its next two possessions, and Cannon and O’Malley each hit a free throw to give Ithaca a 64-57 lead with 36 seconds left and the margin remained at least seven from that point.

Ithaca shot 44 percent from the field, including 58 percent (15-of-26) in the second half. Cortland finished at 32 percent overall and 25 percent (8-of-32) from 3-point range. Ithaca held a 17-7 advantage on the foul line.

Cortland will host Elmira Nov. 26, at 5 p.m. in a non-league game. The start time has been moved up to 5 p.m. from its original 7 p.m. start.