CORNING, NY -- The Finger Lakes Men's Basketball team defeated Onondaga Community College 80-57 on Friday in the Mid-State Athletic Conference Semi-Finals. The Lakers now advance to the tournament finals on Saturday. Finger Lakes improves to 22-4 on the season.
In their third meeting in less than a month, Finger Lakes got out to an early lead against Onondaga. A Torry Wright dunk gave them a 6-0 advantage nearly five minutes into the game. The Lakers would have the game opening run up to 10 points before the Lazers would get on the scoreboard. Kievonn Banks made an instant impact, scoring within seconds of getting subbed into the game for an 18-8 lead. Finger Lakes' defense gave Onondaga problems in the first half as the Lakers had 17 steals. Dylan Verkey's fourth of the half led to transition basket by Noah Whalen. Minutes late, Banks found Whalen for the bucket and 28-11 lead. The Lazers cut the lead down to 28-18 with three minutes left in the half. In the closing minutes the Lakers grew the lead back out and carried a 35-22 advantage into halftime.
Kievonn Banks led the Lakers with 10 points in the half. Brandon Bullock had eight points and eight rebounds. Bullock also had four steals in the half. Also with four steals was Dylan Verkey. Verkey added six points and three assists. Tahaij Lewis grabbed 7 rebounds for the Lakers.
Onondaga opened the second half on a 5-0 run to cut the lead to single digits, 35-27. However, Finger Lakes would answer with a 5-0 run of their own. Brandon Bullock made a basket and Rahiem Robinson followed that up with a three pointer. Tahaij Lewis later found Brandon Bullock down low for the 47-33 lead with 15 minutes left to play. The Lazers made it a 10 point game, 55-45, halfway through the second half. The Lakers had an answer, however, as they went on a 10-0 run capped by a Bullock crossover and deep jumper. The Lakers would maintain the 20 point margin the rest of the game on their way to the 80-57 victory.
Brandon Bullock led the Lakers with 24 points. He also added 11 rebounds and four steals. Bullock moved to 10th on the Finger Lakes All-Time Scoring list with 859 career points.
Torry Wright added 12 points for Finger Lakes and Dylan Verkey and Kievonn Banks each had 11. Tahaij Lewis had a team-high 12 rebounds to go with his nine points.
With the win, Finger Lakes advances to the Championship Game of the Mid-State Athletic Conference Tournament tomorrow at 1pm at Corning Community College. The Lakers will face the winner of the other semi-final between Corning and Tompkins Cortland Community College.