Centre, KY – In most cases, the outcome of an athletic event is predicated on how a team finishes, not on how it starts. However, on Saturday afternoon, Geneva′s men′s basketball team started slowly and put itself into a hole that a late game rally could not overcome. Playing in the consolation game of the Centre College Holiday Tournament, Geneva dropped its second game in as many days by falling to St. Norbert College, WI by the final score of 79-69. The loss dropped Geneva back to the .500 mark for the season at 7-7.
St. Norbert scored 25 of the game′s first 33 points in opening a 25-8 lead just 8 ½ minutes into the game. In fact, Geneva fell behind by as many as 26 points in the first half at 41-15 with just over three minutes remaining before halftime. Geneva managed to score the last six points of the half to cut the lead to 20 at the intermission.
Scratching and clawing its way back into the game, Geneva out scored St. Norbert 22-4 to open the second half and cut the lead to just two points at 45-43 with over 11 minutes remaining in the game. That, however, was as close as Geneva could get. St. Norbert stemmed the tide by scoring the games next ten points and holding off Geneva down the stretch for a ten point victory.
In the first half, Geneva managed just seven field goals, including 0-5 from three-point range. Conversely, St. Norbert blistered to a 7-10 mark from long distance in opening its 20 point lead. Geneva turned the tables in the second half by allowing just seven field goals, but the lead turned out to be too much for Geneva to overcome.
Jermaine Ferguson led Geneva with a season high 23 points, while Kyle McDermott added 19 and Greg McDivitt scored 12 points in the loss. St. Norbert got 17 points from Eric Gruenewald on 6-10 shooting from the field to lead the way in the victory.
Geneva will get back to action next Friday when it travels to Myers University for a non-conference match-up. The Golden Tornadoes will host Point Park on January 11th for the AMC North season opener.