Sunday, February 24, 2013

Army Spoils AU Senior Day

Senior Ella Ellis (13) led Army with 15 points

The Black Knights of Army spoiled American University's home finale yesterday, winning their first ever game at Bender Arena 72-58 before a crowd of 1,704 on hand for Fan Appreciation and Senior Day celebrations. The loss drops AU's record to 10-17 (5-7 in the Patriot League) while Army improves to 14-13 (7-5 PL.)

Before yesterday's contest, the Eagles had held a 24-4 series advantage (including a 14-0 mark at home.) Army put an end to that streak, sweeping the season series (AU lost 77-64 at West Point last month) and increasing their lead over the Eagles to two games in the Patriot League standings. Senior Ella Ellis led the Knights with 15 points (including 4-7 three-pointers) while Stephen Lumpkins paced AU with a team-high 10 points in his last start at Bender.

Lumpkins (who also grabbed six rebounds in 31 minutes) was honored along with six other outgoing seniors before the game (Mike Bersch, Jordan Borucki, Daniel Fisher, Warren Flood, Jr., Blake Jolivette and Daniel Munoz.) Munoz led AU with eight assists, but shot a disappointing 2-11 from the field (including 0-6 from three-point territory.) Head coach Jeff Jones and his staff have their work cut out for them, finding replacements for more than half their team.

The Eagles stayed close in the first half, trailing 31-28; and even led 34-31 early in the second, before Army went on a 9-0 run (never to look back again.) The Black Knights blew it open late, increasing their lead to 22 with just over four minutes to go in the game. Austin Carroll and Jesse Reed hit back-to-back treys to make the score look more respectable.

For the game, Army outshot AU 51 to 45%. The Eagles won the battle of the boards 29-24, but allowed Army to convert 16 Eagles turnovers into 23 points (perhaps the game's most telling statistic.) AU wraps up their regular season on the road versus Bucknell and Lafayette before participating in the Patriot League tournament (and a possible third matchup vs. Army) next month.

Click here for yesterday's box score.