Generals edge Finger Lakes, advance to semis
Delhi, NY – The Friday night game went down to the wire, and the determined Generals combined tight defense with Jerome Floyd's two free throws to win at the end. The ultra-close Region 3 championship tournament game ended 56-52.
Herkimer entered the quarterfinal game with Finger Lakes seeded #1. The Lakers were seeded #8, but any of the final eight teams is capable of defeating any other one.
The game was close and tense from the opening tip. The Generals played with an aggressive defense, and the Lakers nearly matched them. The score was 29-24 in Herkimer's favor at the half.
The scoring pace carried over into the second half. Associate Head Coach Hank Testa commented later, "We were playing well but we were not shooting well. We must have had 10 shots start going into the hoop, then pop out."
Two Generals scored in double figures. Floyd tallied 11 points and assisted on five baskets. Dequan Jefferson had yet another strong game. The senior from Utica scored 13 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Jefferson also had a key steal and dunk with about a minute left that put Herkimer ahead by six.
Jonathan Feiler put nine points on the board. Feiler also made a key block of a Laker shot with two minutes left.
The clocked ticked down. With 14 seconds remaining, Jerome Floyd went to the line and sank two FTs. Herkimer led by four. Then a very good Herkimer defensive effort kept the Lakers from scoring. The Generals won with a 56-52 score.
Herkimer's win allows them to advance to the semifinals on Saturday. The Generals will meet archrival Mohawk Valley in a game scheduled to tip off at 3:00 p.m. The other semifinal game will feature the #2 seed, Delhi, vs. #6 Hudson Valley. The Vikings earned their berth in the semis by upsetting #3 Tompkins-Cortland.