Leafs split a pair in NCIC play

Amy Carton
Michael Ashpole scores two of his 10 points Jan. 12 during the first half of action against the Cavaliers.

After falling to Dixon over the weekend, the Geneseo High School boys’ basketball team got back on the winning track with a victory over LP this week.

Geneseo vs. LaSalle-Peru

Geneseo notched an NCIC win Jan. 12 as the Leafs returned to their home floor to beat LaSalle-Peru, 41-35.

“When we play LP we know it is going to be a rough battle and usually pretty physical,” said head coach Dave Martin. “We worked hard on defense and I am really proud of how we are guarding people and that was the key down the stretch.”

The Leafs took a 10-8 lead at the end of the first quarter and a last second three-point basket by Blake Croegaert at the half put Geneseo up 23-21.

Both teams were held to single digits in the third quarter as LP came within one, 30-29. The Cavaliers scored eight points to Geneseo’s seven.

The Leafs’ defense was able to hold LP to six points in the fourth quarter, while Geneseo’s offense scored 11 to secure the win.

Leading the Leafs’ offense was Michael Ashpole with 10 points on four shots from the field and two free throws.

Croegaert added eight as he drained two shots from beyond the arc and two free throws, while Jared?Kuban scored seven on three field goals and one free throw.

Tyler Fisher and Jonathan Staab both finished with five points for the night — Fisher with a field goal and a three-point basket and Staab went 3-for-3 from the foul line and a field goal.

Sam Hamer contributed four points with a field goal and two free throws, while Chase VanOpdorp finished with two points on a field goal.

“Offensively, I thought it went fairly well,” said Martin. “We are getting the shots we want and I expect us to break out in the near future. Our No. 1 concern is holding the other team down.”

Geneseo vs.?Dixon

The Leafs were on the road Friday night, Jan. 8, where Geneseo fell by three to host Dixon, 36-33.

“I thought we got away from throwing the ball inside and that sets up our outside,” said Martin. “It was one setback, but I like the way we responded last night (Jan. 12).”

It was a low scoring first three quarters for both teams as each squad could only muster up single-digits in all three quarters.

Dixon led the game 8-4 at the end of the first quarter and then went up 14-8 at the half. Dixon scored six points in the second quarter and Geneseo was held to four.

Both squads scored seven points in the third quarter for a 21-15 score in favor of Dixon. The Leafs outscored the Dukes, 18-15 in the final minutes, but it wasn’t enough to edge out the hosts.

Croegaert led the offensive effort for the Leafs with 10 points as he hit three shots from the field, a three pointer and a free throw.

Staab, VanOpdorp and Fisher added five points apiece — Staab with two field goals and a free throw, VanOpdorp on a field goal and three shots from the foul line and Fisher knocked down one shot from beyond the arc and a field goal.

“We are getting good efforts on the defensive end from most guys,” said Martin. “Jon Staab is becoming an outstanding defensive player and rebounder and we are seeing signs from?Michael Ashpole of doing what he is capable of.”

Ashpole finished the contest with four points on two field goals, followed by Hamer and Kuban with two points each, both with a field goal.

“We want to keep attacking, but while we are attacking we need to take care of the ball,” said Martin. “I want to see a concerted effort in practice to get better.”

The Leafs?(7-6 overall and 2-1 in the NCIC) will be on the road tonight in a 7:30 p.m. contest with Ottawa.

Tyler Fisher brings the ball up the floor for the Leafs Jan. 12 when Geneseo hosted LaSalle-Peru.