On Saturday evening, December 14, 1963, former New York City high school all-star Bob Contos poured in 32 points and Jeff-Youngsville High School alumnus Lenny Ernst added 27 as the fledgling Sullivan County Community College Generals, 0 -2 on the year up until that point, recorded their first ever basketball win, a resounding 104-60 victory over visiting Ulster County Community College in the Fallsburg High School gym.
Since that time, through more than fifty-three years of existence, nothing—save perhaps its internationally renowned culinary program– has brought more national attention to S.C.C.C. or SUNY – Sullivan, as it is now known, than its men’s basketball team.
Long before alumnus Cleanthony Early, a two-time first team All-American at Sullivan, joined the New York Knicks as perhaps the most successful graduate of the program, in fact from the earliest days when Ernst and Contos were leading Coach Lee Roberts’ vaunted five, through the days of stalwarts Eddie Strong and Dave Eilenberg, and then to the Coach Dave Possinger era and beyond, with its twelve post-season tournament appearances, four National Championships and two undefeated seasons, Sullivan’s basketball program has always been a strong one.
The 2016-2017 Generals have continued that tradition, starting the season ranked number 7 nationally, racing out to an 11-3 overall record thus far, and standing at 8-2 in the conference. The Generals have won two in a row, including an exciting 89-83 overtime victory against visiting Bronx Community College on December 8 at Paul Gerry Fieldhouse in Loch Sheldrake.
Nysir Williams came off the bench to score 33 points and grab 11 rebounds in just 31 minutes of play to spark that win, while Romero Collier added 19 points and 10 rebounds.
The Generals’ 8-2 Region XV record finds them in second place in the conference as the New Year begins, just behind front-running Nassau Community College, which stands at 9-1 in the conference and 12-2 overall, including a 74-61 win over Sullivan in Garden City on December 3.
The Generals next play against SUNY – Orange on January 17 at home. Game time at Paul Gerry Fieldhouse is 7 PM. Sullivan already owns a win over the Colts, having bested them on November 22 in Middletown by 73-71. Two nights after the game against Orange, Sullivan travels to Stone Ridge to take on Ulster County. The Senators were the opponents when Sullivan opened its 2016-2017 season back on November 1, the Generals recording an emphatic 93-66 win on their home court in that contest.