Beaver Falls, PA – Geneva′s women′s basketball team had a couple items to take care of on Wednesday night. First and most importantly, was Geneva advancing with a first round AMC tournament victory, which it was able to accomplish with a 72-53 victory over Houghton College. Secondly, the victory helped Geneva improve its overall record to 22-4, which tied the single season school record for wins in a season. Tying the mark set in 1997, Geneva moved into the AMC semi-finals on Saturday night.
The Golden Tornadoes jumped out to a 9-2 lead before watching the Highlanders come back to take its only lead of the night at 20-18 with 8:39 remaining in the first half. Geneva was able to quickly recover to regain the lead at 22-20 on a jump shot from Renee Rawding. Geneva stretched its lead to 33-26 at halftime and quickly extended the lead to 40-26 with the first seven points of the second half. Houghton would never again get within single digits as Geneva cruised to a first round play-off victory.
“The play-offs are a new season,” said head coach Ron Galbreath. “We have played great team defense all year and we relied on that again tonight to keep us going in the first half.”
Geneva′s offense certainly didn′t have to take a back seat tonight as Geneva′s co-captains, Kylee Kittner and Allyson Clarke, combined for 39 points. Clarke scored 21 points to go along with 14 rebounds, while Kittner was 6-8 from the field in scoring 18 points. “Those two really stepped up big for us tonight,” said Galbreath. “You have to rely on veteran leadership in these types of games and we were fortunate to get what we needed from our leaders.”
Geneva advances to the semi-final round on Saturday night when it will host Tiffin University. Tiffin upset Rio Grande 75-66 in overtime to advance into the next round. Should the Golden Tornadoes get past Tiffin on Saturday, they would advance into the AMC championship next Tuesday night for a chance at the school′s first trip to the NAIA national tournament.