MOOSE

Men’s basketball falls to Chatham despite Moose’s 27-point effort

The Golden Tornadoes men’s basketball team hosted the Chatham Cougars Wednesday, Jan. 11, in a home conference showdown, falling 84-67. Chatham’s blistering perimeter shooting proved to be Geneva’s demise. The loss bumps the Golden Tornadoes to 6-8 overall and 3-4 in the President’s Athletic Conference (PAC).

Speaking on the loss, head coach Jeff Santarsiero remarked, “Every team goes through this kind of a game. Hats off to Chatham, they played very very well. We just didn’t have an answer for them tonight.”

The contest opened up with a back and forth struggle, but Chatham’s perimeter shooters, led by guard Alex Schoppen’s five 3-pointers and 19 first half points, ripped off a 16-2 run.

Geneva responded, and freshman guard Ethan Moose kept his team in the game with 15 first half points, a combination of midrange jumpers and contested inside shots.

Chatham’s 75 percent from the 3-point range, however, held Geneva at bay, and the Golden Tornadoes went into the half down 45-32.

Coming out of the break, Chatham continued to spread the floor and sink perimeter shots, while Geneva struggled to gain traction on offense and get timely defensive stops.

Senior guard Chaese Vaudrin’s two free throws cut the lead to 67-58 with less than ten minutes left in the second half, but that was as close as the GTs would come.

Chatham’s Schoppen was once again the culprit, hitting his shots from downtown and finishing with 37 points. Behind his effort, Chatham cruised to a 84-67 victory.

Despite the apparent shutdown, Geneva freshman guard Ethan Moose crammed the scorer’s sheet with a season-high of 27 points, going 11-17 from the field and 2-3 from beyond the arc.

Moose gave credit to his coaches when asked about his performance. “Coach Jordan Harbison has been teaching me a lot of moves underneath the basket and helped me with my shot,” he said. “I’m finding comfort in the offense.”

Moose’s development comes during a pivotal time as the team enters the second half of the season and heads into the tenth of their PAC conference games.

“[Moose] works very hard and has a great work ethic,” said Santarsiero. “He’s really starting to improve his outside shooting game and once we get that all going on, he’s a tough guy to stop.”

“The coaches want me to be aggressive and take whatever lanes I have and push the ball up the court,” said Moose about his heightened offensive production.

The Golden Tornadoes will need Moose’s contribution to complement the seasoned games of senior Chaese Vaudrin and junior Jimmy Leichliter as they make a push for the PAC playoffs.

“I told them in the locker room we’re going to forget about this game … and prep for Waynesburg,” said Coach Santarsiero.

Senior captain Vaudrin echoed his head coach’s sentiment as well, “For me as a leader it’s my job to just move on. Tomorrow’s another day. We got knocked down tonight and we have to get back up.”

The team certainly did get right back up, earning two more for the win column in the last week after winning two close conference games on the road. The GT’s defeated Waynesburg University in a 74-72 victory on Jan. 14, and then continued on to beat out rival Westminster College in another nail biting victory of 75-73 on Jan. 18.

However, the surging Washington & Jefferson Presidents ended the GTs three-game win streak in a tough home loss this past Saturday, falling 73-66 to the previously 0-16 team.

The Golden Tornadoes take to the road again this Wednesday night, seeking to fell conference rival Bethany and complete their season sweep of the Bison. Tip-off is at 8pm.




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