Three-Point Shooting And Defense Key Army Win Over Navy

Julian Simmons made the 200th three-pointer of his career in the win at Navy.

Julian Simmons made the 200th three-pointer of his career in the win at Navy.

Jan. 14, 2012

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Army (8-10, 1-2 PL) hit 13 of its 23 three-point shots and held Navy (3-14, 0-3 PL) to 42.6 percent shooting overall and 26.1 percent (6-23) from deep in its 75-62 win at Alumni Hall in Patriot League men's basketball action Saturday afternoon.

The victory snapped Army's 10-game losing streak against Patriot League opponents and its seven-game skid against conference foes on the road. It was the Black Knights' first win against their arch rival since 2010 and its first win in Annapolis since 2008. It was the first time Army scored a double-digit win in Annapolis since 1971.

The trio of sophomore G Josh Herbeck (5), junior F Ella Ellis (3) and senior G Julian Simmons (3) combined for 11 of the Black Knights' triples. Ellis was the team's top scorer with 19 points, while Simmons contributed 18 markers and Herbeck added 15 points. Ellis just missed his first double-double of the season with a team-high nine rebounds.

Simmons became the fourth player in Army history with at least 200 career three-pointers (202), while Ellis moved into 11th place on Army's career three-point ledger (95). Herbeck also climbed the career list, becoming the 15th Army player to make 80 career triples.

Freshman G Milton Washington dished out a career-high nine assists, while classmate Maxwell Lenox added five helpers.

Navy's J.J. Avila led all players with 21 points and completed a double-double with a game-high 14 rebounds. Jordan Sugars added 17 points, while Isaiah Roberts scored 11 points, all in the second half.

The Black Knights came out firing, hitting four of their first five three-pointers to take a 12-6 lead on Simmons' second triple with 16:41 left in the first half. The Mids tied the game at 12-12 on three-pointers by Avila and Sugars before Ellis knocked down his second three-pointer to give Army a 15-12 advantage with 13:59 to go. The first nine field goals of the game were three-pointers.

Avila scored the game's first two-point basket to cut the Mids' deficit to 15-14. Ellis knocked down Army's sixth three-pointer of the half to start a 19-3 spurt that gave the Black Knights their largest lead at 34-17 with 2:17 left. The Army defense limited the Mids to just one field goal during the span, including a scoreless streak of six minutes, seven seconds.

The Mids went back to Avila to end the drought. His two-point basket started a 7-1 Navy spurt that ended the first half and sent the teams into the locker room with Army on top, 35-24. Army did not make a field goal in the final 2:52 of the opening stanza.

The Black Knights hit seven of their 10 three-point tries and hit at a 57.1 percent clip (12-21) overall in the first half. The Army defense limited the Mids to 9-for-26 overall (.346) and 4-for-16 from three-point range. Ellis led Army with 11 first-half points, his 20th straight game in double figures. Avila led all players with 14 points and nearly posted a first-half double-double with eight rebounds.

Navy scored the first basket of the second half to get within nine points, but Herbeck answered with his third three-pointer and Ellis scored on a layup to put the Black Knights back on top 40-26 with 18:06 to go. The Mids scored the next four points, but freshman G Mo Williams knocked down Army's ninth three-pointer of the game to extend its lead back to 13 points.

The Mids pulled within nine points twice, but with the score 52-43 the Black Knights scored 16 of the next 20 points to take its first 20-point lead at 68-47 with 7:48 left. Herbeck sparked the run with a pair of three-pointers, while Simmons drilled his third triple of the game to cap the spurt.

Army led by as many as 22 points before a late push by Navy in the closing minutes made the final score 75-62.

Army returns home on Wednesday, Jan. 18 to face Colgate. Tip-off at Christl Arena is set for 7 p.m. The Black Knights and Raiders split the season series last year with each team earning a road victory.

Game Notes: Army snapped a four-game road losing streak ... Jason Pancoe made his first appearance since suffering a hand injury against Dartmouth ... Army's 13-point win was only the fourth time since 1976 that the Black Knights have defeated Navy by double digits ... the loss was Navy's 10th in a row ... the Black Knights did not trail in a game for the first time this season ... Army now has a chance to win back-to-back Patriot League games for the first time since 2009 ... Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, attended the game and spoke to both teams after the contest.

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