Navy broke a five-game losing streak and spoiled American's homecoming yesterday as the Midshipmen won, 94-82, in front of 3,129 at Bender Arena.
"Our main objective was to stop their three-point shots," said American guard Donald Grant. But that objective failed and Navy hit 11 three-point goals, tying a Colonial Athletic Association conference game record. American had six three-point goals which in part spelled its defeat.
"They took us out of what we like to do," said forward Brian Gilgeous. "At times we went down and took the quick three-pointer and we don't like to do that. We lost our composure and fell into their trap."
John Haase led Navy (6-12, 2-5) with 24 points and Eddie Reddick had 22.
Gilgeous led American (8-8, 3-4) with 19 points. Grant had 18, Craig Sedmak 17 and Brock Wortman 12.
American held an early first-half advantage, but the Midshipmen battled back to take a 44-38 lead at halftime. Gilgeous opened the second half with 11 of American's first 12 points and the Eagles outscored Navy, 14-6, in the first 5:04.
The Eagles trailed 61-60 with 9:50 to go, but then Reddick took over. He contributed the first six points of an 8-2 run that gave the Midshipmen a 69-62 lead. Grant and Gilgeous countered with two three-pointers, but Haase and Chuck Robinson came back with a three-pointer apiece for Navy.
"We hit three and they came right back and hit three," said American Coach Chris Knoche. "They had a response for everything we could throw at them."