Men’s Basketball: Navy Downs Terriers in Conference Clash

By: Matt Doherty

Following an impressive road win at Lehigh three days ago, the Boston University men’s basketball team fell flat on their face Thursday night at Case Gym as they dropped a battle for second place in the league to the Navy Midshipmen,70-61.

“It was disappointing,” Terrier Coach Joe Jones said. “We didn’t play well.”

BU came out slow, falling behind early before a flurry of three-pointers from Cedric Hankerson cut into the deficit. The two teams battled back and forth for the rest of the first half until a five-point swing in the final two seconds gave the Mids a 37-34 lead.

However, in the second half, the visitors controlled the tempo and went on a 13-5 run to open up a double-digit advantage.

From there on, it was the Terriers offensive struggles and inability to rebound that prevented them from coming back in the game as Navy pulled out a nine-point on the road to win their eighth consecutive game.

“You have to give credit to them,” Jones said. “They got to loose balls and they got to rebounds.”

The Mids, the Patriot League’s best rebounding team, completely dominated on the glass where they out rebounded BU 40-31 and piled up a whopping 16 offensive rebounds.

In total, they tallied 14 second chance points and scored six points off of offensive rebounds in the final minutes as the Terriers were trying to march a comeback.

“The second shots killed us,” Jones said. “Our defensive rebounding is killing us and I have to figure out a way to get our guys to go do it.”

Jones mentioned how the Terrier’s zone defense also made it harder to box out the Mids.

On the offensive end, BU struggled as they shot just 38% from the field and 30% from behind the arc.

Eric Fanning led the way with 21 points and was the only source of offense down the stretch. During an 11-minute span, Fanning scored 13 of BU’s 19 points but only converted on two field goals. As a team, the Terriers made just seven second-half field goals.

“We were bad on offense and we didn’t move the ball,” Jones said. “We were passive and they were aggressive.”

Hankerson, who has been struggling as of late, made two three-pointers in the first half, but didn’t score again. Justin Alston, who averages over 11 ppg, only took five shots in the game. The 61 points resulted in their second lowest scoring total at home all season.

Nick Havener, the team’s second leading rebounder, also did not play on Thursday for a team matter. Overall though, it was a frustrating defeat for the Terriers, especially after the high of Monday’s win.

“They outplayed us,” Jones said. “They played harder.”

Despite the defeat, BU is still in sole possession of third place in the Patriot League and will host last-place Lafayette on Sunday. Tip-off is scheduled for 12 pm.

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