Beaver Falls, PA –
As the Geneva College Men’s Basketball program approaches the 2013-14 campaign, they have their sights fully set on the the present. After a difficult 2012-13 season which yielded a 5-21 overall record, Head Coach Jeff Santarsiero has encouraged his team to focus fully on the present and prepare to climb. In fact, the team’s motto is based on this quote from Pat Riley, “When a gifted team dedicates itself to unselfish trust and combines instinct with boldness and effort - it is ready to climb.” Just a few years removed from successful basketball seasons, the Geneva Men’s Basketball program is eager to make the climb back into the conference conversation.
With extra emphasis on a strong work ethic and skill development, Geneva approaches the season opener on November 15th with a balanced roster which features five seniors, four juniors, four sophomores and six freshmen. The Golden Tornadoes are led by seniors Jordan Harbison, Pat Johnson, Jacob Grim and Trevor York. In addition, the basketball program has acquired the services of senior quarterback phenom Zack Hayward. Hayward is a former high school basketball standout and will look to make an impact with the GTs for the first time in his college career.
Jordan Harbison brings the most scoring experience to the team this season as he averaged 11.2 points per game while draining 76 threes on his way to a season average of 42 percent from beyond the arc. Pat Johnson and junior forward Jacob Jaros also bring starting experience to the court for Geneva as Johnson averaged 3.9 points and 2.1 rebounds per game in 13 starts, and Jaros averaged 4.3 points and 4.0 rebounds per game in 15 starts last year. In addition, Trevor York brings positive experience and leadership to the front court for the Golden Tornadoes while Matt Naylor will provide depth down low.
Geneva will be expecting senior Jacob Grim to step into the starting point guard spot and take a much bigger role in the offense. Further, The Golden Tornadoes also expect big contributions from junior forward Tyler Damazo as he transitions from being a bench contributor to a big time piece of the winning recipe. Damazo will look to improve upon his 5.8 points and 3.8 rebounds per game from last season as his responsibilities increase.
Because of the balance on their roster, Geneva hopes to get contributions from several younger players including sophomore Nick Shelton freshmen guards Zach Burns and Chaese Vaudrin. Their athleticism and work ethic have put them in the mix for serious playing time as the season begins.
As opening weekend is quickly approaching, the Golden Tornadoes Men’s Basketball program hopes their efforts in maintaining a strong work ethic have prepared them to make the climb back into relevance in the President’s Athletic Conference. Coach Santarsiero remarked about the upcoming season, “I am extremely excited for this year. The players have made a strong commitment to changing everything. Work ethic, strength, skill development. It is a very exciting time to be around Geneva Basketball. The Upperclassman leadership has been the key to their drive as a team. The sky is the limit for the Golden Tornadoes this year.”
The Golden Tornadoes will begin their climb at Metheny Fieldhouse as they host Houghton in their annual Coaches vs. Cancer Tip-off Tournament on November 15th at 8pm.
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).
Designated as a Pennsylvania College of Distinction, Geneva is recognized as one of the best places in the state for students to learn, to grow, and to succeed.