Beaver Falls, PA - The Geneva Men’s Basketball team battled Thiel College on Wednesday in its first Presidents’ Athletic Conference game of the year. The Golden Tornadoes struggled with consistency early in the contest and were never able to gain an advantage against the Tomcats as they dropped the game by an 81-76 final. A game that was led throughout by the Tomcats, Geneva put together a push in the final minutes to make things extremely interesting but Thiel eventually held on for the victory.
Both teams battled early as the lead was traded back and forth for the first ten minutes of the contest. However, about halfway through the first frame, poor shooting began to catch up to the Golden Tornadoes as Thiel grabbed a lead and kept it throughout the rest of the half. Chaese Vaudrin continued his dominant freshman campaign as he paced Geneva throughout the first half of play with 12 points. The Golden Tornadoes shot 38% in the first half while Thiel shot 53.8% from the field as they gashed Geneva’s defense with their dynamic and athletic presence in the paint. Thiel held a 47-38 advantage at the half.
The second half saw Thiel push its lead to as many as 17 points while Geneva put together mini-runs to keep the game within reach. During a late push in the final minutes of the game, Chaese Vaudrin scored back-to-back buckets to close the deficit to only three points with :48 seconds remaining in the game. After a slew of quick possessions and free throws from either side, Vaudrin completed another dynamic old-fashioned three point play to bring the score to 78-76. Geneva regained possession down by three with 19 seconds left, but was unable to convert a last second three pointer to tie the game. Thiel finished off Geneva with two clutch free throws as time expired to give the Tomcats an 81-76 victory over the Golden Tornadoes.
Freshman sensation Chaese Vaudrin led all scorers with a tremendous 29 points on 7-14 shooting from the floor and 15-18 from the charity stripe. Trevor York was the only other Golden Tornado in double figures as he contributed a solid 15 points and 10 rebounds on the night. Khari Bess shot 8-18 from the floor to lead the Tomcats in scoring with 21 points and nine assists.
Coach Jeff Santarsiero remarked after the tough conference loss, “We played sloppy basketball to start the game tonight. They were an extremely athletic team that made the most of the opportunities we gave them. When you take a while to get going, a team like that will make you pay. We are already looking ahead to Monday.”
The conference loss drops Geneva below .500 for an overall record of 3-4 (0-1). With the win, Thiel moves to 3-2 (1-0) on the season. The Golden Tornadoes have the weekend off before hosting Penn State Altoona on December 9th at 6 p.m.
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