Lehigh holds on to beat Navy, 74-69

January 13, 1994|By Alan Goldstein | Alan Goldstein,Staff Writer

The Lehigh Engineers, who won four games last season, surpassed that total at Alumni Hall last night by surviving a late Navy rally to win the Patriot League opener for both teams, 74-69, before a crowd of 1,059.

Navy (5-7) trailed 65-63 when senior captain Victor Mickel made two free throws with 2:15 left.

But Lehigh senior forward Allen Campbell put the Midshipmen in a hole by making a rare four-point play. He hit a three-point shot and was fouled, adding the free throw for a 69-63 lead with just less than two minutes left.

When senior guard Mike McKee followed with a layup, Lehigh had a seemingly safe eight-point cushion. Navy responded with inside hoops by Larry Green and Wes Cooper. And a jump shot by freshman Randy Torgrimson pulled the Mids within a basket at 71-69 with 15 seconds left.

But they would get no closer as Jason Fichter and sophomore star Rashawne Glenn (18 points) used the foul line to preserve the victory for the Engineers (5-8).

"Last year, they really took it to us here," said Lehigh coach David Duke, recalling the 81-57 whipping exactly a year ago. "But we had a couple of freshman starting back then. Now we're a lot more experienced and confident."

Also a lot tougher, according to Navy coach Don DeVoe. "They took us to the cleaners and just beat our butts tonight," DeVoe said. "Any time a team spends all day riding a bus and then beats us consistently down the floor, they deserve a lot of credit."

Glenn, who leads the Engineers with a 17.7 average, also remembered last year's embarrassing loss at Annapolis. "We played real soft that night," the guard said. "Tonight, we played aggressive for 40 minutes and withstood all their rallies."

Sophomore guard Jim Hamilton, who made five three-point shots, led the Mids with 19 points. Mickel had a season-high 14.

DeVoe kept his second-leading scorer, T.J. Hall, out of the conference opener. Hall had to sit out two varsity games because of participating in two junior varsity contests.

DeVoe started three guards -- freshmen Torgrimson and Scott Holden and Mickel, who shifted to small forward. But it hardly helped the Midshipmen's ball-handling as they committed six turnovers in their first seven possessions.

The Engineers were only slightly better, beating the Mids down the floor to build a 10-5 lead.

Navy capitalized on its long-range shooting, making three three-pointers, including two by Mickel, to move ahead 11-10. At the 10-minute mark, the Mids had two fewer turnovers (9) than points. At halftime, Navy led, 31-29.

The Engineers made four of their first five shots in the second half to lead 38-34. Ivan Wilkins scored two baskets off offensive rebounds. Navy again turned to its perimeter game to spark a comeback. Three-pointers by Hamilton and Mickel put the Mids on top, 40-38. Hustle by Alex Kohnen on a loose ball then produced a Holden layup. A driving shot by Hamilton completed the 10-point spree.

Two baskets by sophomore star Glenn and a tip-in by Wilkins pulled Lehigh into a 48-48 tie.

LEHIGH -- McKee 2-7 2--2 7, Glenn 7-14 3-4 18, Campbell 4-7 3-3 12, Daniels 0-0 0-0 0, Hallett 2-4 0-0 4, Widmer 4-6 0-0 8, Fichter 7-11 2-5 17, Hodgson 0-1 0-0 0, Wilkins 4-5 0-0 8. Totals 30-55 10-14 74.

NAVY -- Butler 0-3 0-0 0, Walker 0-3 1-2 1, Ra. Torgrimson 1-2 0-0 2, Holden 3-12 0-1 6, Green 4-10 2-5 10, Hamilton 7-13 0-0 19, Mickel 3-4 5-5 14, Cooper 5-10 1-2 11, Kohnen 3-6 0-0 6, Eaton 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 26-64 9-15 69.

Halftime--Navy, 31-29. 3-point goals--L 4-15 (Glenn 1-2, Fichter 1-3, Campbell 1-3, McKee 1-5, Widmer 0-1, Wilkins 0-1); N 8-17 (Hamilton 5-10, Mickel 3-4, Butler 0-1, Walker 0-1, Ra.Torgrimson 0-1). Rebounds--L 31 (Wilkins 8); N 40 (Kohnen 8). Assists--L 19 (McKee 7); N 13 (Holden 6). Total fouls--L 15, N 18. Fouled out--none. Technicals--none. A--1,059.

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