The AU men’s basketball team will not make the NCAA Tournament for the first time in three years, as they failed to advance past Lehigh University in the Patriot League tournament.
Lehigh defeated the Eagles 79-57 on Sunday. It was the third time Lehigh defeated AU this season. Much like the other two games, the Mountain Hawks maintained control of the basketball and never allowed AU to get an offensive rhythm.
Lehigh took control of the game early, jumping out to an 11-3 lead in the first half. Not only did AU find themselves down early, but one of their best players, Vlad Moldoveanu, got into early foul trouble. AU trimmed Lehigh’s lead to just six points at the midway point of the first half, but Lehigh would finish strong ending the half with a 39-21 lead.
It didn’t take long for Lehigh to all but put away AU in the second half. After four minutes of play, Lehigh had extended their lead to 23. AU would not threaten the Lehigh lead in the second half, as the Mountain Hawks coasted to the win.
AU sophomore Stephen Lumpkins scored a team high 15 points and had nine rebounds. Moldoveanu, who had been one of AU’s major scoring threats during the season, had two points on 1-4 shooting. Lehigh’s CJ McCollum led all players with 22 total points on the day.
Lehigh will go on to face Lafayette College in the Patriot League Championship game. The winner will advance to the NCAA tournament.