Ogunyemi Glad To Bring Albany Cup Back Home To Siena

jo albany cup

For Siena junior Javion Ogunyemi, winning the Albany Cup Game is something that not too long ago, he thought he would never get to experience. With the Saints having lost the rivalry game in each of his first two seasons, Ogunyemi looked like he would never get another crack at it as he announced his decision to transfer to Boston University.

After having a change of heart, Ogunyemi returned to Siena and, once ruled eligible to play this season by the NCAA, he would once again have a shot at beating UAlbany in the home turf rivalry game. He and the Saints took full advantage of that opportunity as they reclaimed the cup beating the Danes, 78-70 Saturday night.

“It’s overwhelming to think I might be in Boston on this day,” said Ogunyemi moments after claiming the cup. “To be back here playing and get this win, it reminds me how lucky I am to be back home playing for Siena.”

Growing up in this area, Ogunyemi was aware as much as anyone just how much winning this game means. Having watched the game in person as a high schooler as well as being a victim of trash talking out and around town after losing the game his first two seasons, he was not about go down again without a fight.

While he started out somewhat quiet in this contest, it was Ogunyemi who took the game over when the Saints needed him most.

“Javion didn’t have a lot of things go his way early,” said Siena coach Jimmy Patsos.  “But he was the one who said, ‘We’re going to win this game,’ with eight minutes left. ‘Quis and Brett are the captains but Javion has become our de facto leader along with those two.”

Ogunyemi scored 10 of his 13 points down the stretch and threw down four dunks in the closing minutes that not only helped seal the victory but hammered home the joy of winning this game in front of the hometown crowd.

“It means a lot me being from this area, seeing how important the game is,” said Ogunyemi. “I was just happy I could make an impact. Most importantly this game means a lot to all of us here, the Siena family. Just to come out with a win is great.”

“We knew he would,” said Bisping on Ogunyemi on willing Siena to the win. “Before the game he talked to us and he told us how bad he wanted it. We knew how bad he wanted it. He’s a great player and he came through. Javion doesn’t need to say much for us to know he’s into the game. He’s a quiet guy but he told us that this is one that we have to get and we just need to play tougher than them.”

“Winning this year, now we have bragging rights,” said Ogunyemi with a smile. And now both Ogunyemi, and the cup are back home.


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