Keuka men’s basketball earns first win of season

Staff reports
The Chronicle-Express

Keuka College 91 vs. Russell Sage College 79

KEUKA PARK – The Keuka College men’s basketball team won their first game of the season on Sunday afternoon against Russell Sage College, defeating the Gators 91-79.

Daniel Obunse (Queens, N.Y. / Flushing) led Keuka College (1-6, 1-6 Empire 8) with a career-high 21 points. Nana Oteng (Queens, N.Y. / Martin Luther) added 20 points for the Wolves. Devin Milton (Opelousas, La. / Beau Chene) recorded his second career double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. The sophomore also added four blocks, two steals, and two assists.

The Wolves came out fast on Sunday as Zayquan Warren (Brooklyn, N.Y /Holy Cross) stepped into the three of the early lead. The Gators answered later in the half as Jalon Borders converted a three-point play to give Sage the 15-13 lead, but the two-point advantage would be the largest for the guests all game. The Green and Gold answered back as Isaac McIlroy (Watkins Glen, N.Y. / Watkins Glen) knocked down a three. Later, Nana Oteng hit a pair of threes on back-to-back possessions as Keuka opened a 27-20 advantage with nine minutes left in the half. Russell Sage cut back into the lead, but the Wolves led 44-42 at the break.

The game would trade hands early in the second half. In total, there were eight lead changes, and it was tied nine times on Sunday. The Wolves took the lead as Nana Oteng hit a step-back three to give Keuka a 57-54 advantage. The trey was a part of a game-high 8-0 run for Keuka as the Wolves grew their lead to 61-54 with 12 minutes left to play. The Gators cut the margin back down to two, but Keuka opened it up again. Isaac McIlroy’s fourth three of the day gave Keuka an 81-64 advantage, their largest lead of the day. The Wolves would see the game out, defeating Russell Sage College 91-79 on Sunday.

Sunday was the first-ever meeting between Keuka College and Russell Sage College in men’s basketball. The win marked the first of the season for Keuka College, the first at Keuka College for new Head Coach Jake Scott, and the college’s first-ever Empire 8 Conference victory

In total, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was over a year, 370 days, since Keuka College last won a game as a school. The softball team defeated Mount Mary College on March 16, 2020.

The Gators had the advantage on the inside over Keuka, but the Wolves took advantage from outside. Keuka outscored Sage by 15 points from three and by 11 points from the free-throw line. In total, Keuka was 13-29 from three. It tied the season-high and is tied for second-most threes in a game in program history. Isaac McIlroy finished with 17 points off the bench for Keuka, setting a new career-high for the freshman.

Up Next for Keuka College: The Wolves return to action on Thursday as Keuka College hosts St. John Fisher College in the first of a home-and-home doubleheader. The Wolves will face the Cardinals at the JMW Recreation and Athletics Center on Thursday and then travel to St. John Fisher College on Friday.