LIVONIA — The Geneseo boys’ basketball team picked up their eighth win of the season, defeating the Livonia Bulldogs 64-51. While the Blue Devils won by a margin of 13, the final score was not indicative of the fight that the Bulldogs put up.
At the end of the first quarter, the Bulldogs led by one point, 17-16, and were receiving solid offensive production from forward Cody Cronmiller and freshman guard Ricky Allen.
While they would continue to battle throughout the game, with the Blue Devils only leading by 10 heading to the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs would come up short, mainly due to the offensive production of Blue Devils guard Mo Carlon, who had a game-high 24 points.
Geneseo head coach Brian Stout talked about the challenge Livonia posed.
“They’re a very good team,” Stout said. “They’ve got a freshman point guard (Allen) who had been shooting really well and I think we put some good pressure on him. He got a couple good looks on us early and I don’t think we gave him another good look after that. Mo (Carlon) and Bryan (Rollins) did a great job of switching up on defense on him and we forced some tough shots.”
Allen finished with 10 points, while Cronmiller lead Livonia with 21 points, another player Stout said his team focused on stopping.
“They were pushing the ball up on us early and we let Cronmiller get the ball on the left wing, we knew they were going to push it to him and we just didn’t get back and deny him that wing,” he said. “Our adjustment was to take him away in the transition and we stopped their break much better after that.”
Carlon, who paced his team, talked about the defense pressure that the Blue Devils implored.
“Coach was preaching in practice, ‘just put pressure on them and make Allen give up the ball,’” Carlon said. “He didn’t have a move to the right, so I just pushed him left and when he went there, I knew I could keep the pressure on him if my guys helped me out by calling out screens, so we just put pressure on him”
Known for his up-tempo style, Carlon said he is still finding the balance between instant offense and turning the ball over.
“I think I’m too fast for the ball,” Carlon said jokingly. “Coach always tells me to ‘push the ball in front of me’, but sometimes I get it to my side and I’m moving too fast, so once I get ahead of it, it’s at my side and I can’t get in front of it, so I try to keep it in front of me, so I can control it and look up. In practice, coach has us do a drill keeping the ball in front of you and constantly trying to dribble heads up, and I’ve been getting a lot better at it, but I’ve just got to work on it a little more.”
Geneseo (8-1) will see action again Friday, on the road against Romulus.