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Service Academy Basketball Roundup: Lady Falcons Deliver Lone Win

In a dismal week for service academy basketball, the struggling Falcons halt their seven game skid. 

NCAA Basketball: San Diego State at Air Force Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Army Men’s Basketball (11-12 Overall, tied for 5th in the Patriot League at 6-6):

Army basketball went and dropped two games this week, effectively halting the momentum they had been building over the past three weeks.

Army West Point hosted Boston University on a Wednesday night matchup and wasted two huge efforts from senior duo Matt Wilson and Tommy Funk. The two put up 24 points a piece accounting for more than 70% of total Army offensive production in the contest – they also accounted for a majority of total assists and rebounds. Their effort was not enough to stop an evenly distributed team effort from Boston. The Terriers had ten players put points on the board and each of them also contributed with at least a rebound or assist. It’s tough win a game when everyone on the other team who sees the court is able to contribute.

A Saturday matchup in Washington DC against American showed a little improvement across the squad, but not enough to steal a road victory. Junior Lonnie Grayson was the story in the game as he racked up 17 points, 8 rebounds, and 3 steals. Wilson and Funk also contributed with double digits scoring efforts once again as well. American’s Stacy Beckton Jr’s double-double and Sa’eed Nelson’s 23 points were just too much for the Black Knights to overcome.

Army begins a two game home stand on Wednesday hosting Lafayette and then Lehigh on Saturday.

Army Women’s Basketball (5-17 Overall, last in Patriot League at 1-10):

Army tried to bounce back after a blowout lost to Lehigh last week, but followed it up another disappointing loss to American in overtime.

The game started with some pretty even back and forth in the first two quarters, before Army seemed to take control in the third by doubling up American in scoring for the period. It would not be enough though as the Eagles surged back to tie the game and force overtime. American would sustain that momentum and cruise to victory in the extra period. The Black Knights had 7 different players score and 9 contribute rebounds, including 15 from Sophomore Alisa Fallon. American’s Jade Edwards and Kaitlyn Marenyi were just too much for Army to stop. Edwards put up a double-double with 23 points and 11 rebounds; Marenyi added another 18 points of her own to the contest.

Army will travel to Pennsylvania to face the Lafayette Leopards. The last matchup was another close one, so hopefully the Black Knights will bounce back from this tough loss and steal one on the road.

Navy Men’s Basketball (12-11 overall, tied for 5th at 6-6 in Patriot League):

Navy dropped two straight patriot league contests this week and is now tied for 5th with Army in the Patriot League.

Navy hosted American on Wednesday in a contest that was back and forth all night long. Navy’s Cam Davis, Evan Wieck, and John Carter Jr. all had solid efforts, but the shooting percentage was lackluster, especially from beyond the arc in the contest. It would ultimately prove do be the difference maker as American, led by Jamir Harris, ultimately had more success, especially from three point range. The Midshipmen will no doubt be looking for redemption next Wednesday, when they hit the road to take on the Eagles in D.C.

A Colgate 18-2 run mid way through the second half was enough to hold off the Midshipmen on Saturday. The Mids struggled once again with consistency from three-point range, going just 6-27 in the contest. This has been Navy’s biggest struggle for much of the season. The Mids have been consistent on the boards, significantly leading the Patriot League in the rebound margin. They also have the best scoring defense in the league by more than 5 points per game. Unfortunately, they also have the worst scoring offense in the league.

The Mids inability to pair their terrific defense with consistent offense has been the real challenge this season. There is still time to get things back on track and make a run in the Patriot League. The Mids host Bucknell on Wednesday and Boston University on Saturday — they will be looking to sweep the home-away series against both opponents.

Navy Women’s Basketball (7-15 overall, 2-9 and 9th in Patriot League):

Navy hosted Patriot League #2 Colgate on Saturday, but failed to deliver a victory after a strong third quarter indicated a comeback was forthcoming. The Mids beat the Raiders on the boards, but returned the favor with their turnovers. Although Navy went 10-12 from the line, they managed a meager 1-15 from long range and a paltry shooting percentage of 33.9. The Raiders weren’t much better, but they did just enough to keep the Mids at bay for a majority of the contest.

The Mids will travel to Bucknell to face the Bison on Wednesday and will be looking to halt their three-game skid.

Air Force Men’s Basketball (9-15 overall, 3-9 and 10th place in Mountain West):

Air Force also had a rough week going 0-2 in Mountain West competitions.

The Falcons were trounced on the road in Reno. Nevada double up Air Force in the first half by a score of 22-44. The Wolf Pack would go on to score another 44 points in the second half as well, in a contest that was never in doubt. Nevada guard Jalen Harris was on fire all night, going 6-8 from downtown, and perfect on free throws for the evening, totaling 38 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists.

Air Force improved a bit on offense Saturday when they hosted #4 and undefeated on the season San Diego State, but gave up more points. Senior Forward Lavelle Scottie had another big effort with a double-double, but it was not enough, as the Aztecs’ shooting efficiency eclipsed Air Force’s by a wide margin.

The Falcons then took on Boise State in an early week matchup last night, failing to really put anything substantial together and losing by a final score of 74-57. Scottie once again led the way with 16 points, and Air Force got to within two with just over 15 minutes to go in the second half, but the Broncos took off from there to finish with the 27 point victory.

The Falcons have now lost seven in a row and will host San Jose State on Saturday, a game in which they will be looking to avenge an earlier loss and one in which they should and desperately need to win.

Air Force Women’s Basketball (5-18 overall, 3-9 and 10th place in Mountain West):

The Lady Falcons are the only service Academy basketball team with a victory this period, but they also lost a contest.

Air Force gave up a 4th quarter lead to Nevada while hosting the Wolfpack in Colorado Springs. The contest was close all game, but a late surge by Nevada put it out of reach for the Falcons.

The lone bright spot of the week was a road victory against San Diego State. The Falcons went into the 4th quarter tied with the Aztecs, but superior efforts from Junior Kaelin Immel and Sophomore Riley Snyder were the difference, as both Falcons contributed 17 points a piece, including the game winner by Snyder.

Air Force snaps a seven game losing streak with the victory and will look to being a new streak on Wednesday when they host Boise State.