Beaver Falls, PA - So far in the early season for the Geneva College women′s basketball team it has been all about the offense and trying to limit the number of turnovers. On Saturday, it was the defense that sparked the Golden Tornadoes to a 53-50 victory over Fredonia State University. Trailing by five at halftime and by as many as nine in the second half, Geneva held Fredonia to just two field goals in the final 15 minutes to rally for the victory.
Trailing 32-27 at halftime, the Golden Tornadoes decided to turn up the defensive pressure. After five minutes, Fredonia State had increased its lead to 43-34 to take its biggest lead of the game. Geneva slowly crept back into the game and finally took its first lead at 48-47 with 5:15 remaining in the second half. Rachel Rouan′s put back lay-up with 2:50 to play gave the Golden Tornadoes a 50-48 lead but the Blue Devils tied the game once again at the 2:04 mark. Alyse Scarsella put Geneva up to stay with an offensive rebound and lay-up at the 1:43 mark. A Rouan free throw at the 25 second mark extended the lead to 53-50 and Fredonia′s last ditch three-point effort in the final seconds bounced off the rim and Geneva held on for the victory. "This was a big character victory for us," said head coach Renee Drake. "We battled foul trouble all game but we were able to get things done on the defensive end of the floor for a big victory."
Geneva moved to 2-0 on its home floor with the win and moved above the .500 mark for the first time since the first week of the season in 2009. Despite battling foul trouble, Scarsella led the Golden Tornadoes with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Scarsella picked up her fourth foul on the first defensive possession of the second half and was forced to sit out for the next 12 minutes before returning for the stretch run. "We were in a tough spot without Alyse for most of the second half but several of our ladies did a great job stepping up in her absence and helped us stay close in the second half."
Beth DeLuca added ten points and six rebounds while Christine Carugati and Leah Prisuta each added seven in the victory. Fredonia State was led by Liz Wierbinski′s 15 points as the Blue Devils dropped to 2-3 on the season.
Geneva will begin play within the Presidents′ Athletic Conference on Wednesday night when it hosts Washington & Jefferson at 5:30 pm.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College′s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).