Coming off of an electric home game win against Baruch College on Nov. 9, SUNY New Paltz men’s basketball struggled to get on top of Farmingdale State on their Nov. 13 matchup. The Rams welcomed the Hawks to Long Island at 7 p.m. for what would be a tough back and forth match.
The Rams started it all off, with fourth-year guard/forward Troy Feeney making a layup 36 seconds into the game, and a jumper to bring his team to an early 4-0 lead. Fourth-year forward Scott Reisert retaliated first for the Hawks with a 3-pointer, and fourth-year forward Tristian Wissemann matched his energy with another three-pointer to bring the score to 6-4.
For the next several minutes, everything seemed to be in favor of the Hawks. Third-year guard Jake Passaretti lead the way, with a jumper and two successful free throws. After a 3-pointer from Weissemann, it would be the last time New Paltz would have the lead in the first half. Farmingdale managed to charge the score up to 10-10, and from then on they had the better numbers.
This isn’t to say the Hawks fell very far behind. New Paltz fought hard and they always kept Farmingdale in arms reach. Throughout the first half, the scores were 14-13, 19-18, 21-20, 34-31 and 45-41. With 30 seconds left, Wissemann net a layup to end the half at 50-43 Rams.
The second half is a story of “almost there.” The Hawks continued to struggle against the Rams’ offense. With just over 11 minutes to go, Passaretti ignited the hopes of players and fans by bringing the Hawks out of their deficit. His two free throws and a layup tied the game at 63-63. New Paltz’ excitement was short-lived, however, as the Rams snatched the lead right back.
The teams continued to battle it out, until the Hawks saw the light at the end of the tunnel once more. Reisert and Wissemann worked together to bring the score to 76-75 Hawks, with the first earning a layup and the latter a 3-pointer. With just under seven minutes left of playing time, did this game have potential to be one of the biggest comebacks for the Hawks?
However, in the world of collegiate sports, nothing is ever easy. The Rams went on a mini-scoring streak to nab the lead from the Hawks yet again. One may have chalked the win up to the Rams right then and there-but any loyal basketball fan knows “it ain’t over ‘til it’s over.” As if the game couldn’t get anymore nerve-racking, New Paltz went on a scoring streak of their own. Wissemann scored a consecutive four points from a layup and two free throws. Passaretti followed with a layup of his own, to tie the game at 87-87.
This was the third time of the game where the score was tied, but it would be the last. With 43 seconds left in the game, the Rams broke the tie and maintained the lead for the rest of the half. Despite solid efforts from second-year guard/forward Brandon Scott and Wissemann scoring late, the Hawks fell to the Rams 93-90.
The top players of the day were Wissemann for the Hawks and Feeney for the Rams. Wissemann scored one more point than Feeney: 27 vs 26. New Paltz also led the day in bench points 23-18.
The Hawks’ have an overall record of 1-1, and will face SUNY Maritime on Saturday, Nov. 23 for a non-conference matchup. Let’s see if the Hawks are able to bounce back.