Posted Online: Feb. 07, 2013, 11:32 pm

Boys basketball preview: Geneseo (8-13, 3-4 NIB12W) at Streator (6-15, 1-6 NIB12W)

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By Steve Tappa, stappa@qconline.com

Tonight: 7:30 at Streator's Pops Dale Gymnasium. Sophomores at 6.

Twitter updates: @TT_jtpedelty

Saturday: Both are idle until Northern Illinois Big 12 crossover games Tuesday, with Geneseo at Rochelle and Streator visiting Morris.

Starting lineups
Geneseo:
G: Jordan Starkey, 5-9, Sr. & Ethan Radue, 5-10, Jr. & Luke Snyder, 5-11, Jr.; F: Ethan Reschke, 6-2 Sr. or Grant Burress, 6-1, Sr. or Austin Frank, 6-7 Sr.

Streator: G: William Phillips, 5-6, So. & Nolan Sokol, 6-0, Jr. & Matt Urbance, 6-1, Jr. F: Colton Olson, 6-2, Jr. & Josh Houch, 6-5, Sr. (Note: Statistics unavailable).

Why watch: With the conference crown out of question for either team, momentum heading into the postseason later this month is the focus. Geneseo won the season's first meeting, 39-33 in mid-December. "They're a much improved team from the last time we saw them, and they almost beat us then,'' Geneseo coach Brad Storm warned. "They just beat Sterling (last Friday) and should have beaten (league leaders) Ottawa and LaSalle-Peru. So they're playing their best basketball right now.'' ... Both teams are coming off blowout losses Tuesday to smaller schools. Streator fell 64-33 at Putnam County. State-ranked Rockridge ripped Geneseo, 70-35. ... Storm reports 6-foot-7 center Austin Frank is finally back to 100-percent from a knee injury that sidelined him most of January. "He's looked good in practice so far,'' the coach said. "We might start him.'' If not, Storm won't have to choose between Ethan Reschke and Grant Burress up front. ... The flu bug has bitten the Leafs, with a pair of reserves missing practice time this week. "Luckily, our regulars have missed it so far,'' Storm said. ... Starting tonight, Geneseo's next three games are on the road. ... Streator had fourth-quarter leads in four of its six league losses, and is 1-7 so far in the 2013 portion of its schedule.

Geneseo's Storm: "We like to get out and play in transition, as long as the opportunities are there and we're not throwing the ball around. We need to play our tempo because last time we didn't play our game against these guys and almost got beat. We've got to get back to playing like we did in almost beating LaSalle-Peru (last Saturday). We need to bounce back from (Tuesday's loss to) Rockridge. That's a good team, but we didn't compete in the first half like we did in the second half.''

Streator coach Beau Doty: "(Tuesday loss is) one of those that you just have to get erased from your memory banks as soon as possible and get ready for (tonight). We've got to try to get rid of it and get ready. Geneseo is a much different team, tempo-wise, which benefits our style a lot more.''
-- By Steve Tappa, tappa@qconline.com