Navy Men’s Basketball Falls at No. 13 Miami
CORAL GABLES, Fla. - The visiting Navy men’s basketball team (1-1) fell at No. 13/12 Miami, 89-55, on Sunday at the Watsco Center. Navy was playing on short rest after defeating ACC-member Pittsburgh, 71-62, in the Veterans Classic on Friday evening.
“For us, I think we had a great win versus Pittsburgh on Friday,” said Navy head coach Ed DeChellis. “Obviously, that gets everybody’s attention, and we played poorly here today, but I give [Miami] a lot of credit. They are a very good basketball team, they’ve got speed, they’ve got length, they’ve got guys who can guard you and they made it really, really difficult for us this afternoon.”
Sophomore guard Dejan Vasiljevic led five Miami players in double figures with 16 points. Sophomore forward Dewan Huell posted a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, while senior guard Ja’Quan Newton also scored 14. Junior center Ebuka Izunda scored 12 points and junior guard Anthony Lawrence added 10 points and seven rebounds.
Junior point guard Hasan Abdullah led Navy with 13 points and made three 3-pointers. Junior forward George Kiernan added 11 points off the bench, and senior forward Tom Lacey also scored in double figures with 10 points to go along with five rebounds, two assists and two blocked shots.
Senior guard Bryce Dulin had a team-high eight rebounds and a team-best four assists.
The Hurricanes raced out to a 9-0 lead before Lacey scored Navy’s first basket at 15:22 in the first half. Two 3-pointers in two minutes by Kiernan kept Navy within striking range until Miami went on a 9-0 run to take a 31-12 lead.
Navy then responded with a 9-0 run of its own to cut the margin back to 10 at 31-21, but the Mids were never able to get the margin back to single digits.
Freshman forward Tyler Riemersma started the 9-0 run by scoring on a fastbreak off an assist by Abdullah, and then Abdullah drilled a 3-pointer and followed with a pull-up jumper to prompt a Miami timeout. Riemersma then made two free throws to cut the margin to 10.
Miami then scored the next 10 points before another Abdullah 3-pointer cut the halftime margin to 41-27.
The Hurricanes continued to build on their lead in the second half and went up by 30 points at 69-39 with 10 minutes left in the game. Lacey keyed Navy’s offense in the second half, scoring eight of his 10 points after halftime.
Miami outscored Navy in the paint, 50-26, and scored 29 fastbreak points. Miami also outshot Navy 55 percent to 33 percent and outrebounded the Mids, 42-33.
“We talked about trying to control the tempo of the game with our offense and trying to take good shots,” said DeChellis. “I thought we played really fast, hurried. We took a lot of hurried shots early in the game, let them get it going and they fed off that.”
This was just the second game in the all-time series between Navy and Miami. The Mids defeated the Hurricanes in the first meeting on Feb. 7, 1987, 78-62.
Sunday marked the first time Navy played a top-25 team since taking on No. 24 Oregon in Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 2015. It was the first time Navy played a top-15 team since facing No. 10 Missouri on Dec. 10, 2011.
Navy will next play at Penn (0-1) in the historic Palestra on Wednesday.