FMCC women win regular-season finale; men come up short

PHOTOGRAPHER:

Fulton-Montgomery Community College’s Harmony Philo handles the ball next to Hudson Valley Community College’s Alyssa Bruno and Leemys Garcia on Wednesday.

JOHNSTOWN – It was a most unusual finish to a most unusual regular season for the Fulton-Montgomery Community College women’s basketball team.

After playing their 18-game schedule in a span of 34 days, the Raiders wrapped up their regular season with a forfeit victory over Hudson Valley Community College.

“We’ve played 18 games in just over four weeks,” FMCC coach Kevin Jones said. “At the beginning of the season, I wasn’t sure how it would go. I think we’ve done pretty well considering the circumstances.”

The outcome wasn’t unusual for FMCC, which improved to 12-6, but the path to the win was.

Hudson Valley started the game with just six available players and ended it with just three as the game was forfeited with FMCC leading 49-41 with 4:17 remaining in the third quarter.

Harmony Philo led the Raiders with 15 points, while Kiarra Kennedy had 14. Sarah Emanuel-Norwood added 12 for FMCC. It was the final regular-season home game for Philo, Ndiaye, Kennedy, Katie LaGrange and Katie Hastings.

Kathryn Stackrow scored a game-high 28 points to pace Hudson Valley (11-10).

Things started to go downhill for the Vikings late in the first half when Leemya Garcia went down with a shoulder injury.

Then midway through the third quarter, HVCC’s Alyssa Bruno picked up fouls on back-to-back possessions and fouled out, leaving the Vikings with four players on the floor with 4:43 to play. On the fifth foul, the HVCC bench picked up a technical foul as FMCC extended its lead to 49-41.

Moments later, the Vikings’ Nya Ewans-Edmonds and Raiders’ Djenaba Ndiaye collided head-to-head on a battle for a rebound, leaving Ewans-Edmonds’ nose bloodied and HVCC down to three players.

Following the collision, Jones and HVCC coach Keith Danzy met with the officials at midcourt and decided to end the contest, giving a forfeit win to FMCC.

“It was an odd finish to the regular season for sure,” Jones said.

Given that they’ve played their entire season since Jan. 13 when they opened at Genesee Community College, the Raiders have come to expect the unexpected.

“Honestly, when we went to Genesee for our first game, we hadn’t even played 5-on-5 yet,” Jones said. “We competed in that game, and we’ve done pretty well since.”

With so many games on its schedule, practice time has been at a premium for FMCC.

“It’s been difficult for us because we have only had a day of practice here or there and we can’t go hard when we do because we’ve played so many games back-to-back, Jones said. “We’ve been walking through a lot of things to get ready for games rather than going full speed.”

With the postseason beginning on Saturday, FMCC has an opportunity to cap its bizarre season with a regional title.

“It’s been a long, strange trip. I’m proud of the team for making it through. Now, we’re going to turn our attention to getting ready for the regional tournament,” Jones said. “I think we have some of the pieces we need to compete for a regional title. It comes down to getting wins in the tournament to win the title. We’ve got a couple of days off to get ready, which is something we haven’t really had too often this season.”

FMCC is expecting to host a Region III sub-regional game Saturday. The brackets are scheduled to be announced Thursday.

“It’s all there for us. If we play well, we have a chance to make some noise,” Jones said. “I’ve been pleasantly surprised. If you had told me this was how it was going to go when we started, I wouldn’t have believed it, but I’ll take it that’s for sure.”

HVCC 10 21 10 xx — 41
FMCC 13 19 17 xx — 49
HVCC scoring: Bruno 1-0-2, Garcia 1-0-2, Stackrow 10-5-28, Ewans-Edmonds 4-0-8, Senior 0-1-1. FMCC scoring: Iannotti 1-0-2, Ndiaye 3-0-6, Philo 5-3-15, Kennedy 5-4-14, Emanuel-Norwood 5-0-12. Scoring totals: HVCC 17-6-41, FMCC 19-6-49.

FMCC FALL SHORT AGAINST HVCC

In its final regular-season contest, the FMCC men’s basketball team dropped an 85-66 decision to Hudson Valley Community College.

“We just came out flat tonight,” FMCC coach E.J. Gallup said. “It’s been kind of a tale of two teams for us all year. We have the ability to beat anybody, but we also have the ability to lose to anybody as well.”

Wednesday’s game was more of the latter as the Raiders fell behind early and weren’t able to overcome their deficit against the Vikings, who won for the 10th time in their last 11 games.

“Hudson Valley is a good team, and their coach does a good job with them,” Gallup said.

Trevor Green scored a game-high 27 points to pace Hudson Valley (16-6), while Kobi Wallace and Jourdan Belcher each added 14 points.

Joey Rowback led FMCC with 24 points, while Korey Greenland added 19 points.

It was the final regular-season home game for Greenland, Kory Bergh, Anderson Jones, Adnan Ahmed, Richard Gannon and Kento Igarashi.

“It’s been an up-and-down season for us,” Gallup said. “We’re hoping to put a complete game together in our regional game Saturday.”

FMCC (10-10 overall) is expecting to host a Region III sub-regional game Saturday. The brackets are scheduled to be announced Thursday.

“It’s been nice to be able to be back and play,” Gallup said. “We’re happy to have a full season. We have a lot to build on.”

Halftime score: HVCC led 37-27. HVCC scoring: Gateretse 1-1-3, Bourgault 3-0-8, Green 9-9-27, Veidemanis 1-2-4, Wallace 6-0-12, Belcher 4-6-14, Flynn 3-0-6, Kiefer 3-1-8, Bianchino 0-1-1. FMCC scoring: Greenland 7-1-19, Mateo 3-2-8, Jones 1-0-2, Graveley 1-0-2, Early 1-0-2, Gannon 1-1-3, Rowback 8-8-24, Ladipo 2-0-6. Scoring totals: HVCC 30-20-85, FMCC 24-12-66.

By Paul Wager

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