Turnovers and poor play in the paint lead to a bad second half performance in a 77-64 loss against The United States Military Academy Jan. 26.
The Eagles (7-13, 2-3 PL) went into the second half with a one-point lead against the Black Knights. Army (9-11, PL 2-3) started the second half quickly. Less than 20 seconds into the half, Army’s Kyle Toth turned a one-point deficit into a four-point lead by hitting a three pointer. That four-point lead continued to grow throughout the second half. The Black Knights’ lead topped at 16 with 7: 36 left in the game.
Two issues that have plagued AU all season, turnovers and an inability to finish close to the basket fueled the Black Knight’s quick start to the second half. The Eagles first two possessions consisted of a missed layup and two turnovers.
Turnovers became a theme throughout the game. AU turned the ball over 15 times, seven of those coming in the second half.
Another key difference from the first to the second half was shooting. Army shot below 43 percent in the first half. In the second half, that percentage skyrocketed to almost 64 percent. The Eagles could not keep pace, hovering around 40 percent for most of the game. There was an even larger disparity in 3-pointers. The Black Knights hit 5-9 from deep, and AU was as cold as the weather from the 3-point land, going 2-10. John Schoof, coming off a career-high 27 points against Navy, was only 1-5 from beyond the arc.
One positive note for the Eagles was Stephen Lumpkins, who pitched in 21 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Both were game highs.
The Eagles will look to even their Patriot League record against Bucknell University (17-4, PL 4-1 PL) Jan. 30 at Bender Arena.