By: Chris Lynch
After an exciting overtime victory over Loyola and two disappointing second halves against Colgate and Bucknell, the Boston University Terriers take to the road for a matchup against Army, currently tied for fourth in the Patriot League at 3-4.
The Black Knights are only one spot ahead of BU, so this game will have important standing implications. Army had a strong non conference record, at 9-3, but have been inconsistent since Patriot League play began. They depend on the highest scoring offense in the conference, averaging 81.1 points a game this season, and the highest rebounding offense in the conference, averaging 41.0 team rebounds a game.
Army is led by the conference’s leading scorer and rebounder Tanner Plomb, who is averaging 21.8 points a game this season.
Teammate Kevin Furgeson is averaging 8.2 rebounds a game. Furgeson also has the highest field goal percentage in the conference among qualifying players, shooting .617 from the field and averaging 11.1 points a game. The Black Knights have one other double digit scorer in Kyle Wilson, who is averaging 16.7 points a game. Wilson is leading the Patriot League in made three pointers per game, at 3.5. The Black Knights lead the conference in made three pointers per game, 9.9, and is third in three point percent, at .369.
BU will be hard pressed to contain Army’s powerful offense. The Terriers do have skilled defensive players and have had successful defensive games. They have the third best defensive field goal percentage in the conference at .438, and have a better scoring defense and rebounding defense than Army does.
The Terriers boast a strong offense of their own too. The third best scoring offense in the league, The Terriers feature more offensive diversity than Army.
Four Terriers are averaging double digit points, led by Eric Fanning’s 14.4 points a game. Cheddi Mosely, John Papale, and Nathan Dieudonne are all in double digits this season, and Kyle Foreman is just shy of double digit points. They can score in a variety of ways, which can catch Army’s defense, which has had some poor performances this season, off guard.
However, BU’s defense will have a difficult time in the game. They will need to limit Army’s possession total, and will need to stop Army from getting inside. Look for Nathan Dieudonne to prevent scoring from Tanner Plomb inside and try to limit his impact on the game.
Army will have to win the game with an efficient front court that has not turned the ball over much this season. BU’s front court is talented, but to win will require dominant play from their front court. They can win the game on Wednesday night at West Point, but it will be the hardest test for their defense this season.