The last time Colgate played Navy in Annapolis, 11 months ago, the Red Raiders suffered a humiliating 42-point defeat.
But yesterday at Alumni Hall, it was Navy on the wrong end of a rout after Colgate pounded the Midshipmen, 89-67, and gained sole possession of the Patriot League lead.
The game was not as close as the final margin indicated. Colgate coach Jack Bruen pulled all his starters, including All-America candidate Adonal Foyle (24 points, seven blocks, six rebounds), with 2:34 remaining and the Red Raiders leading 82-54.
Navy (8-8, 3-1) scored the next 13 points, but by then most of the crowd of 3,512 was in the parking lot.
The way the Red Raiders (6-10, 3-0) dominated the game from start to finish made it clear that they will be even tougher to beat than last season, when they whipped the Mids in the tournament final to gain an NCAA berth.
There was some thought that the Raiders would not be as strong this season after losing all-time scoring leader Tucker Neale. But, if anything, Bruen has more depth this season and superior perimeter shooting.
"Last year, if Neale had a bad game, we struggled," Bruen said. "But this year we have a lot of guys who can make that outside shot, and that eventually opens things up for Foyle inside."
That was what happened in the first half yesterday. Navy concentrated on denying the ball to Foyle in the low post, only to be burned by the long-range shooting of sophomore guard Seth Schaefer, who made five of six three-pointers in scoring 17 first-half points.
The Red Raiders made seven of 10 from three-point range to gain a 43-29 advantage at halftime, and the Mids would never draw closer.
In the second half, Navy did a better job of protecting its perimeter, but it could not stop Foyle, who scored 17 of his 24 points on short jumpers, hooks and put-backs.
Navy coach Don DeVoe tried everything to neutralize the 6-foot-10 sophomore, even employing 6-3 Hassan Booker. But that only compounded the defensive problem.
"Let's face it, Adonal Foyle is a man playing in a non-scholarship league," DeVoe said. "He should dominate. With his ability, he should be among the national leaders in all the categories for a post man."
Bruen said his team is now fully using Foyle's scoring potential. The native of the tiny island of Canouan in the Grenadines spent his freshman year concentrating on defense.
"Our players have become more comfortable with the idea of getting the ball to Foyle," said Bruen. "We want to get him as many looks as possible. He helps everybody's game. He's learning to stay down low in the post. Once he masters that, he'll be unstoppable."
Said Foyle: "I'm focused on scoring more this season. But if teams sag on me, I have confidence my teammates will make the open shot."
Colgate did just that, converting 57 percent (29-for-51) of its field goal attempts and an astonishing 73 percent (11-for-15) from three-point range. Navy shot only 40 percent (26-for-65) from the field. Only fast-maturing sophomore forward Eddie Lucas (17 points, five rebounds) shot with any accuracy.
"Give Colgate all the credit it deserves," said DeVoe. "They were absolutely overpowering and could have won by 40 points."
DeVoe will now try to regroup his team in time for Wednesday night's home game against Army.