Dec. 9, 2009
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. -- Maryland Eastern-Shore went on a 12-2 run over the game's final five minutes to hand the Navy men's basketball team an 80-72 setback on Wednesday night. The loss drops Navy to 4-6 overall, while UMES won its third straight game and improved to 3-5 overall.
Navy led 70-68 on a Romeo Garcia jumper with 5:03 to play, but went scoreless for the next five minutes, missing all six of its shot attempts, committing three turnovers and missing a pair of free throw attempts. UMES took advantage, scoring the game's next 10 points, and handing the Mids an eight-point defeat.
"We did some things that were okay, but we just did not have the intensity and desire to win tonight. UMES played with a lot of intensity and passion and we just did not match them," said Navy head coach Billy Lange. "We are definitely going to have to step up our intensity and passion as we move forward."
Navy trailed 41-32 at halftime and UMES took its largest lead of the game moments into the second half at 45-32, before Navy started to chip into the lead, eventually tying the game at 51 with 13:59 to play on one of Chris Harris' five three-pointers.
Navy would continue its run and led 62-57 with 10:18 to play. But despite UMES going without a field goal for almost three minutes, the Hawks actually cut into the lead, trimming the margin to 62-58 with 7:45 to play. The Mids went 0-of-4 during that sequence and committed a pair of turnovers when Navy could have turned a five-point lead into a seven or eight-point advantage.
"That was a key moment in the game, without a doubt," said Lange. "We came away with empty possessions, when we felt we had a chance to really take control of the game. We made some poor decisions during that span. We did not rely on our experience or took control. We just weren't thinking or focused much tonight and it cost us."
UMES would rally and tie the game at 66, 68 and 70, then seized control with its late game-ending run.
UMES surged out to a 9-3 lead five minutes into the game, as the Midshipmen missed their first six shots of the contest. However, Navy found its range and used an 11-0 run to take a 14-9 advantage with 11:47 to play.
But once again, the Hawks rallied, outscoring the Mids, 32-18, the rest of the way in the first half, settling in for a 41-32 halftime cushion.
Navy shot just 40.0 percent (28-of-70) from the field and just 28.1 percent (9-of-32) from three-point range. Navy also hurt itself at the free throw line, making just 7-of-15 attempts (.467). UMES shot 42.2 percent from the floor and was 21-of-27 from the free throw line.
UMES also outrebounded the Mids, 48-40, and had 20 offensive rebounds, resulting in 19 second-chance points. Navy had 14 turnovers to UMES' 16.
Chris Harris paced Navy with 23 points, but was just 8-of-27 from the field. Jordan Sugars recorded his third double-double of the season with 19 points and 14 rebounds, while Jeremy Wilson came off the bench to score 10 points with four rebounds. Romeo Garcia chipped in with nine points, seven assists and four rebounds.
Hillary Haley led UMES with 20 points, and the Hawks had three players with at least 10 rebounds.
Navy will head south on Saturday to battle Wofford in Spartanburg, S.C., beginning at 3:00 pm. No Navy radio will be available for the contest, but Wofford will air the game on ESPN Radio (1400 AM) online at www.ESPN1400AM.com(.)
# GO NAVY #