Men's Basketball to Open League Play at Loyola on Friday
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Navy (9-4) will open its 27th season of Patriot League men's basketball at Loyola (2-9) on Friday at 7 PM in Reitz Arena in Baltimore. Navy has increased its conference win total for five straight years. Navy was 10-8 in the Patriot League last season.
Loyola will provide free live video on navysports.com and the Patriot League Network, and live statistics will also be available. Pete Medhurst and Michael Heary will have the Navy radio call on 1430 AM / 99.9 FM WNAV in Annapolis.
Navy enters conference play having won eight of its last 10 games and with a 9-4 record.
Navy won five straight games from Nov. 26 to Dec. 10, but fell to Lipscomb in its non-conference finale, 73-64, on Dec. 21.
Navy's four losses this season have come to Miami (11-1), Penn (9-4), FGCU (7-8) and Lipscomb (9-4).
Senior forward Tom Lacey posted a double-double in Navy's game against Lipscomb with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Senior guard Bryce Dulin scored a team-high 15 points and had five rebounds.
Senior guard Shawn Anderson is leading Navy in scoring (12.8) and minutes played (31.8), and he shares the team lead for rebounding (5.8) and assists (3.3).
Anderson currently ranks 21st all-time at Navy in career scoring with 1,098 points.
Anderson is also 14th in career assists with 253. He needs two assists to move past Greg Sprink `08 into 13th place.
Dulin ranks second on the team in scoring at 12.2 points per game. Dulin has scored over 20 points three times this season.
Lacey is third on the team with 9.9 points per game and shares the team lead of 5.8 rebounds per contest.
Junior point guard Hasan Abdullah is fourth on the team in scoring (9.7) and is tied for first in assists (3.3).
Abdullah leads the team and the Patriot League, while ranking 14th in the NCAA, with 2.5 steals per game.
Abdullah's 32 total steals rank as the ninth most in the NCAA.
Navy ranks first in the Patriot League in scoring defense at 67.6 points allowed per game.
Navy also ranks first in the Patriot League in rebounding margin (+5.6) and offensive rebounds per game (11.2).
Navy is 8-0 this season, and 18-0 over the last two seasons, when scoring at least 70 points in a game.
Navy is averaging 71.8 points this season, its highest mark since averaging 76.3 in 2007-08.
Navy averaged 64.9 points last season.
Navy has increased its conference win total from the previous season for five straight years. Navy won 10 conference games last season in 2016-17.
The streak of five straight years of increasing conference victories is tied with South Carolina (SEC) for the longest such active streak in the NCAA.
Navy is just 10-26 in Patriot League openers. The Mids lost their last two conference openers (both to Bucknell).
This will be the third time Navy has faced Loyola in a conference opener. Each team has won once.
Head coach Ed DeChellis is in his seventh season at Navy.
Loyola enters conference play with a 2-9 record.
Loyola's lone Division I win came over Drexel, 66-62, on Dec. 21.
The Greyhounds also defeated Division III Goucher, 97-45.
Loyola's final non-conference game of the year was an 83-71 loss at Memphis on Dec. 23.
Memphis is coached by Tubby Smith, the father of Loyola's coach G.G. Smith.
Tubby Smith brought his Memphis team to Navy's Veterans Classic earlier this season to take on Alabama.
Senior forward Cam Gregory is averaging a double-double at 14.3 points and 10.1 rebounds.
Gregory leads the Patriot League in rebounding and ranks 18th in the NCAA.
Sophomore guard Chuck Champion is leading Loyola in scoring at 17.7 points per game.
Champion missed the first five games of the season and then scored 26 points in his season debut against Dartmouth on Nov. 28.
Sophomore guard Andrew Kostecka is averaging 12.1 points in seven games and senior guard Andre Walker is averaging 11.4 points in nine games.
Loyola was picked sixth in the Patriot League preseason poll.
Loyola was 16-17 overall last season and 8-10 in conference play.
Series History vs. Loyola
Navy leads the all-time series against Loyola, 26-6.
Navy has won six straight games in the series, sweeping the season series against Loyola in each of the last three seasons.
Navy defeated Loyola, 75-62, in Baltimore last season, while also posting a 62-59 win in Annapolis.
Navy is 6-3 all-time against Loyola in games at Reitz Arena.
The series between Navy and Loyola began in the 1909-10 season.
Looking Ahead: Back-to-Back Home Games Against Lehigh and American
Navy will next play two straight home games against Lehigh and American.
The Mids will host Lehigh on Tuesday, Jan. 2 and will host American on Friday, Jan. 5.
American was picked ninth in the Patriot League preseason poll and Lehigh was picked fourth, one spot behind Navy.
Navy Won Nine Non-Conference Games this Season
Navy went 9-4 in its 13-game non-conference schedule in 2017-18. The nine wins matched the program's 2015-16 season total of nine wins (also 9-4). Navy went 4-1 in non-conference home games. Navy's non-conference wins came over Pittsburgh (71-62), Bryant (79-71), Washington College (Md.) (110-45), St. Francis Brooklyn (85-76), Denver (79-71), Delaware (82-76), Morgan State (66-59), Coppin State (70-53) and Columbia (73-68).
Mids Win Five Straight Games During Non-Conference Slate
Navy won five straight games during the non-conference portion of its schedule in 2017-18. Navy opened the winning streak while at the Homewood Suites FGCU Shootout with a 79-71 win over Denver. The Mids then won back-to-back home games over Delaware, 82-76, and Morgan State, 66-59. Navy then won two straight road games at Coppin State (70-53) and Columbia (73-68). Navy's five-game winning streak was its longest since winning eight straight games last season during the first half of the Patriot League schedule. Navy also had winning streaks of seven games and six games during the 2015-16 season.