Geneseo Boys Basketball Recap - Week 3

by Claudia Loucks correspondent
Kyle Traphagan
Anthony Pierce
Bristol Lewis

The Geneseo Boys Basketball finished Week3 of this Covid-19-shortened season with a victory over Quincy in the GHS gym. and Varsity Coach Brad Storm said, “Despite only winning one of three games this week, I felt like we showed growth in several ways.”

Feb. 27 – Geneseo – 45 vs. Quincy – 40

For the second time this season, the Geneseo Maple Leafs shut down the Quincy Blue Devils, the first time in Quincy and on Feb. 27 in the GHS gym.

It was a balanced attack that the Leafs used against Quincy, and Coach Brad Storm said, “We were set to see some more improvement after the growth we saw in practices this week. Win or lose, we needed to see that. I told the players that if we do, we will be in a position to compete for a win.”

Prior to the contest with Quincy, Storm and his team compiled a check list of things they needed to do in the game that were within their control.

“After the game we were able to check off most of those with a definite confirmation and a few that we felt we did at least ‘ok’ on. “And we got the win by doing those things,” Storm said.

The Maple Leafs led for most of the game, but Quincy grabbed the lead early in the fourth quarter and Coach Storm said, “Unlike Tuesday night (against Sterling), we made plays on both ends of the court that were needed to earn the win. Offensively, we took care of the ball, executed some actions, and hit some key shots and free throws.”

“Kyle (Traphagan) had kind of struggled with getting his shot to fall, but when we really needed them, he knocked down two big 3’s with confidence.”

The coach cited “only one or two breakdowns in the last several Blue Devil possessions and we made it really hard to score.”

He said there were solid contributions by everyone who played a lot or a little, and our bench was enthusiastic and positive…”It made for a fun environment to be part of,” Storm said.

The Leafs did struggle from behind the arc (5-24) and Storm said, “We probably settled for too many 3-point attempts early in some possessions, but we did a good job of getting some shots in the middle of their zone to make up for it. And, because we struggled with our shooting, we had to rely on things we could control, including team defense.”

Bristol Lewis had 18 points and 8 rebounds in the game; Kade Ariano grabbed 14 rebounds (7 offensive, which was huge for the Leafs) and 8 points including two decisive free throws with 11 seconds left to close out the scoring.

Kyle Traphagan had 13 points; PJ Moser had 5 rebounds and 3 assists; Anthony Pierce and Thomas Henson each had a 2-point field goal.

Feb. 23 – Geneseo - 63 at Sterling - 72

The matchup between the Geneseo Leafs and the Sterling Golden Warriors ended in a loss for Geneseo, although Coach Brad Storm said, “This was somewhat of a frustrating game because I felt like we were in some control for much of the game.”

After losing the lead in the third quarter of the game, the Leafs were back on top early in the fourth quarter until as Coach Storm described it, “Before we reverted back to struggling against pressure. Sterling made the energy plays late in the game to get the win, and that was disappointing.”

Storm also referred to some calls and plays “not go our way which made it hard to close things out and instead helped Sterling to do so. It’s difficult when the foul calls were 19-7 for the game and we were 2-3 from the free throw line and they were 23-29. Yet, we had our chances and didn’t find a way to get it done.”

Sophomore Bristol Lewis led the Leafs in scoring with 18 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Senior Kyle Traphagan and Anthony Pierce each had 15. Kade Ariano had 6 rebounds to go with 4 points; PJ Moser had 6 points, with Will Taylor adding 3 and Thomas Henson with 2.

Feb. 26 – Geneseo – 50 at Galesburg – 74

The Geneseo Maple Leafs were within striking distance into the fourth quarter of the contest, but things began to fall apart late in the contest.

“The final spread of the score was not indicative of the game,” Coach Brad Storm said. “We had several breakdowns that gave them some open looks, and they shot the ball well. In fact, they shot it better than they have so far this year.”

Storm credited his team for getting Galesburg to take some shots that they were not hitting much this season, “and to their credit, they knocked them down against us,” he said. “We did a much better job against their pressure than we did the first game a couple weeks earlier, but there were enough turnovers that led to easy transition points.”

He said he “liked how we battled and I really thought we made some great strides in how positive the players were with each other. We made some defensive adjustments to our system after the first 6 games and I felt like we played more as a unit. We were better defensively in that way.”

“It’s too bad that there was about a 3-minute stretch where we didn’t execute offensively and they converted well offensively that put the game away.”

Kyle Traphagan led the scoring with 16 points; Anthony Pierce had 11; Bristol Lewis, 8; PJ Moser, 5; Thomas Henson, 4; Kade Ariano, 2; Charlie Clauson, 2, and Will Taylor, 2.

Bristol led the Leafs in rebounding with 5 and in assists with 3.