Not-So-Friendly Final as Mt. Union Spoils Home Tournament Party

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Van Zanic

Director of Sports Information

(724) 847-6886



November 22, 2008


Beaver Falls, PA - After an offensive explosion in the season opener on Friday night against Philadelphia Biblical University, Geneva′s men′s basketball saw the tables turned as Mt. Union sizzled from the floor in the championship game of the Tornado Tip-Off. Mt. Union improved to 3-0 with an impressive 85-69 victory over a Geneva team that fell to 1-1 on the young season.

Both Geneva and Mt. Union cruised to victories in the first round of the Geneva tournament on Friday night, but it was the Purple Raiders that were able to build off of that momentum on Saturday afternoon. Mt. Union came out on fire in the first half and burned the Metheny Fieldhouse nets for a mark of 55% in the first half. The Purple Raiders took a commanding 48-30 lead into the locker room and held on in the final 20 minutes.

Trailing by as many as 22 points in the second half, Geneva and senior Rich Colick started to find their shooting touch and with just over seven minutes left in regulation, the Golden Tornadoes had trimmed the lead to eight points at 61-53. The Golden Tornadoes were unable to get any closer as Mt. Union extended the lead for a 16-point decision.

Despite the loss, Colick showed why the Golden Tornadoes are so excited to have him back in the line-up this year. He led all scorers with 34 points, including 20 points in the second half. He was 12-16 from the field and 8-8 from the foul line. He also led Geneva with 12 rebounds in the loss. Colick was named to the All-Tournament team, along with teammate Dave Phillips, who was playing his first collegiate games this weekend. Phillips finished the game with 14 points and five rebounds.

Mt. Union′s Dave Pellerite was also named to the All-Tournament team with his 14 points and nine rebounds. Chris Switzer led the Raiders with 21 point, including a 5-8 effort from three-point range, which was good enough to earn tournament MVP honors.

The Raiders shot 52% from the field for the game and only committed seven turnovers in the game. Mt. Union posted a balanced attack with five players in double figures including 14 each from Sam King and Jay Mathis. Luke Conley added 16 points in the victory.

"We were unable to come up with many defensive answers against a very good offensive team," said head coach Jeff Santarsiero. "It was disappointing because we certainly didn′t play our best basketball, but at the same time, I am encouraged by the potential that we have on our team. Rich had a special game and I think he showed everyone how good he can be this year. My job is to get all of our guys on the same page at the same time and we could have a special season."