The third-seeded Genesee Community College men's basketball team fought its way past No. 6 Jamestown Community College on Tuesday night, downing the visiting Jayhawks 104-96 in the opening round of the Division II Region III playoffs.
JCC jumped out to an early 6-2 lead but the Cougars ran off eleven straight points to take the lead, one which they would not give up the rest of the night.
The Jayhawks stayed close however and were within two at 42-40 with 2:30 remaining in the first half.
Genesee used a 10-3 run to close the opening period and went into the locker room with a nine point lead.
Ervin Mitchell scored 18 of his 24 points in the second half for Genesee, which held a lead a large as 20 in final half.
Naquil Jones hit a three-point basket to put the Cougars up 75-55 with under ten-minutes to play, but Jamestown hung around and made it close late.
After forcing two GCC turnovers with under two-minutes to go, JCC scored on both takeaways and cut the Cougars lead down to 96-86.
The Jayhawks got to within eight in the final seconds but ran out of time and Genesee advances to the Region III Final Four for the first time since the 2011-12 season.
Jones finished with 25 points and 10 rebounds for the Cougars, Mitchell added eight boards to his 24 points, Alex Morris and Alastair Cole each had 18 points, Jason Perry-Murray recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds and Da'Shawn Suber dished out six assists.
Genesee (22-7) will face No. 2 Erie Community College on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. at Monroe Community College. The winner will play for the Region III championship on Sunday.