Posted: January 17, 2010
WEST POINT, N.Y. – Four Lehigh players scored in double figures and the Mountain Hawks held Army to 33% shooting as the Brown and White downed the Black Knights 73-55 on Sunday afternoon at Christl Arena. Senior Zahir Carrington led the Mountain Hawks with a season best 20 points, while fellow seniors Marquis Hall and Dave Buchberger added 15 and 12, respectively, and freshman C.J. McCollum scored 13. Cleveland Richard was the lone Black Knight in double figures with 11. Lehigh improves to 11-7 overall following the win and 2-1 in the Patriot League while Army falls to 11-6 and 1-2.
“This was a big win for us. To come up to West Point against a very physical, defensive minded Army team and score 73 points while also getting back to where we want to be on the defensive end is great for this team,” Lehigh head coach Brett Reed explained afterwards. “Thursday night at Navy was a tough game; a lot of back and forth for our guys and we got away from our game plan at times as well. Then it was a quick turnaround for this game today at Army. I thought we shared the basketball very well on offense and established an inside presence early and then on the defensive end we made life tough for Army and forced them into taking shots they weren’t comfortable with.”
Lehigh shot a solid 45% from the floor for the game, including 39% from three-point range. Hall stuffed the stat sheet with team highs of seven rebounds and seven assists, while Carrington pulled down six boards and freshman Gabe Knutson totaled five. Lehigh sank 18-of-24 shots at the free throw line and committed 11 turnovers. The Mountain Hawks also forced Army into 15 turnovers, converting those into 18 points.
Jeremy Hence led the home team with eight rebounds, while Josh Miller totaled five assists. The Black Knights sank only 6-of-24 from beyond the arc but did out-score Lehigh 21-4 in second chance points. Army shot only 12 free throws for the game and converted seven of those attempts.
Army jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead on the Mountain Hawks before Carrington scored Lehigh’s first two points on a pair of free throws 2:21 into the contest. A three by Hall tied things at 11 with 13:22 left before halftime and a McCollum jumper two minutes later tied the game once again, this time at 13. Lehigh took its first lead of the afternoon when McCollum drilled a three off a feed from Hall at the 9:01 mark and a Carrington jumper with 7:45 to go put the Brown and White up five, 20-15.
A nice spin move followed by a short jump hook from freshman Holden Greiner extended Lehigh’s lead to 24-17 while junior Rob Keefer’s three-pointer with 4:23 left before halftime gave the Mountain Hawks another seven point advantage at 27-20. Army pulled to within four on a Jon Sizemore scoop shot but McCollum hit his second three of the half with just over a minute to play and senior Dave Buchberger got open for another Lehigh three, this one coming with only five seconds to go, and Lehigh took a 33-23 lead into the locker room.
Lehigh shot 42% in the opening 20 minutes and was led on offense by Carrington with 12 points and McCollum with eight. Hall was the team leader in rebounds and assists with four of each and the Mountain Hawks turned the ball over just three times. Led by McCollum’s two-of-three showing the Brown and White sank five-of-11 from beyond the arc, good for 45.5%.
Hence scored a team best seven points for the Black Knights in the opening half while Chris Walker added six on a perfect three-of-three shooting. Army shot only 37% from the floor, including 18% from three-point range and the home team pulled down 18 rebounds. Miller was the team leader in assists with four and the Black Knights committed six turnovers.
Lehigh’s lead grew to 16 on jumpers by Hall and Carrington and a pair of free throws from McCollum, while Buchberger’s three-pointer at the 15:46 mark put the Mountain Hawks in front 44-27. Another three by Buchberger, this one at the 14:07 mark, gave Lehigh another 17 point bulge, 47-30. Army eventually got to within ten at 54-44, but Lehigh ripped off ten straight points in a matter of 3:03 to go up 64-44 and the Brown and White never looked back from there. With the win Lehigh snaps a two game losing streak versus Army in West Point.
Lehigh - Army Post-Game Extra
Lehigh returns to action on Wednesday evening when the Mountain Hawks play host to the Colgate Raiders at Stabler Arena. Tip-off is set for 7:05 and tickets can be purchased by calling 610-7LU-GAME, by logging onto Lehighsports.com or at the arena box office prior to tip-off.