Lionel Gomis is no longer with the Siena men’s basketball program. The sophomore recently informed Siena head coach Mitch Buonaguro and athletic director John D’Argenio of his desire to leave the program for family reasons.

“We’re sorry to see Lionel go, but respect his decision,” Buonaguro said.

Gomis (Dakar, Senegal/Blair Academy, (N.J.)) appeared in just one game at Siena, logging two minutes in the season-opening loss to Vermont.

The College successfully petitioned the NCAA on Gomis’ behalf last year, providing him with two additional years of eligibility (three total). An initial NCAA reclassification ruling had limited Gomis to just one year of eligibility.

Siena returns action Sunday at Fordham in a game that will be televised on the YES Network at noon.

Update (8:15 pm) - Siena College released a statement from Lionel Gomis, which stated the following:

I would like to thank Siena, Coach Buonaguro and his staff for the great opportunity to have been a part of Siena's men's basketball program.

I am grateful for all the support the president, Father Kevin Mullen, athletic director John D'Argenio, and all the athletic department for helping me get through last year with the eligibility issue. They battled very hard for me so I could have back the years of taken away by the NCAA ruling. That alone shows what Siena is all about.

However, I believe at this time it is in my best interest to find a new destination close to loved ones who will cheer me on and motivate me to be the best I can be. For me to be successful, I need to be around the people who understand and know what I've been through. The feeling of just being around them will make my journey less stressful and help me focus on what I am here to do - get a good education and succeed on the court as well.

I am forever thankful to my coaches, teammates, friends, fans and the entire Siena Community for everything and wish the basketball program the best going forward.

I plan to enroll in a a new school for the spring semesterbut I have not yet determined where it will be!

The preceding information was provided by Jason Rich, the Assistant Athletic Director for Communications at Siena College.

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