Dec. 17, 2006
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) -Greg Sprink and Corey Johnson each scored 13 points to lead Navy past Delaware Valley 65-40 on Sunday.
Navy (8-3) was playing its first game in 10 days and struggled early against the Division III Aggies (3-7), who rallied to tie the game at 33 early in the second half. Navy recovered with a 24-3 run to take a 57-36 lead with just under five minutes to play.
The Aggies went 8 1/2 minutes without scoring, missing seven shots in a row and turning the ball over nine times before ending the drought with 3:46 remaining.
"I was pleased with the way we played, but not how we played," said Navy head coach Billy Lange. "We need to play the way it will take to beat Patriot League teams. We just didn't have a lot of focus, energy and intensity, but we expected that coming out of finals, especially when you are depending on young kids."
Navy shot just .370 percent in the first half, but improved to shoot .500 percent in the second and .418 percent for the game. Delaware Valley shot just .294 percent.
Adam Teague added 12 points and nine rebounds for the Mids, who outrebounded Delaware Valley 46-30. Johnson had nine rebounds, and Sprink contributed eight. The rebound totals for Teague and Johnson were career highs.
Isaiah Pinckney led Delaware Valley with 21 points, including 11 of the Aggies' 19 first-half points. Navy led 29-19 at the half, but the Aggies ran off a 14-4 run to tie it with 16:30 to play.
Navy responded with its big run, holding Delaware Valley to shoot just 1-of-13 over the next 13 minutes, while Navy outscored the Aggies, 24-3. The 40 points scored by Delaware Valley tied for the ninth fewest in school history since records started being kept (1952-53).
"I wasn't that worried when they tied it up, because of Greg Sprink
and Corey Johnson
," said Lange. "We weren't real thrilled with the way we were playing, but we knew they would step up. Their leadership came through tonight."
The Mids also got a strong performance from their newest member of the team, Brian Richards
. The 6-8, 230-pound sophomore from Stevensville, Md., was playing in his first career game and scored four points with three rebounds and an assist in just 12 minutes.
"Brian was on our JV team and in practice, he would bring a level of physicality and toughness," said Lange. "He has been impressive in practice, so we moved him up and will give him a shot. He will get better with time."
The Mids did commit 17 turnovers, but dished out 18 assists on their 23 made baskets. Navy shot a season-low .238 percent from three-point range, making a season-low five three pointers. The Mids did shoot .824 percent (14-of-17) from the free throw line.
"We were lacking the offensive energy and it was because of a lack of focus," said Lange. "When that happens, it affects your defensive energy and that is what happened there early in the second half."
The Mids will take on Washington College (Md.) on Wednesday night at Alumni Hall at 7:00 pm. For fans that can't make the contest, the game will be streamed free online at www.navysports.com.
# GO NAVY #