Comeback sends Cougars past Alfred State

Maurice Bailey scored a team-high 17 points and Stanley Peacock delivered seven points and nine rebounds in the second half to help the Genesee Community College men’s basketball team overcome an 11-point halftime deficit to defeat Alfred State College on the road on Thursday night, 75-73.

Genesee grabbed an early 7-1 lead in the first half but saw it quickly slip away as the home team responded. The Pioneers cashed in nine first half 3pt baskets and had as much as an 18 point lead during the first twenty-minutes. GCC was able to cut the Alfred State lead down to 11 at the half, and trailed 41-30 at the intermission.

The Cougars stepped up defensively to begin the second half and got back to within three after a 10-2 run to start the final period. Donte Meredith helped spark the run, scoring six of the first eight GCC points. Alfred State would increase their lead to as many as nine with 11:30 to play, but Genesee kept battling and fought back behind Bailey and Peacock. Peacock converted on two three-point plays and a 3pt basket from both Bailey and E.J. Blackwell got the Cougars to within one at 58-57. Bailey then gave GCC their first lead since the early going with a layup after the Cougars came up with a defensive stop. After a Pioneer 3pt basket, Bailey answered with a three of his own to put Genesee in front, 62-61.

Trailing 66-64 with under seven-minutes to play, Bailey again came up big for GCC with his fourth 3pt basket of the night to regain the lead for Genesee. The Pioneers continued to answer, and took a 71-69 lead with five-minutes left. After tying the game at 71 with a layup, Joe Gray gave Genesee their largest second half lead with a 3pt basket of his own to put the Cougars in front 74-71. Alfred state scored the final field goal of the game with 2:20 remaining to get to within one at 74-73, and both teams produced defensive stops throughout the final minutes to keep the game close.

Still trailing 74-73, Alfred State had possession of the ball with less than ten-seconds to play. The Pioneers were unable to score, but did draw a foul and went to the free throw line for two shots. They were unsuccessful on both attempts and Terryl Coombs boarded the final miss with under a second to play. He was fouled and made one-of-two free throws, and the Cougars escaped with the two-point win.

Peacock finished with a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Blackwell added 15 points and seven assists, Vaughn Boler chipped in 12 points and Meredith and Gray each finished with nine points.

The Cougars improve to 6-7 in conference play and are now 15-14 overall. They will end the regular season on Saturday afternoon when they host Erie Community College for a 3pm start.