Mids win 3rd straight

Kina leads six in double figures with 19

streak longest since '02

Navy 106 Washington Col. 80

December 19, 2005|By RICH SCHERR | RICH SCHERR,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Fresh off a nine-day break for final exams, Navy yesterday returned to the court and passed a significant test of its own.

Freshman guard Kaleo Kina scored a career-high 19 points to lead six players in double figures, as the host Midshipmen took a large early lead and coasted to a 106-80 win against Division III Washington College, giving them their first three-game winning streak since January 2002.

That's no small accomplishment for a team that has lost at least 19 games each of the past four seasons.

"These seniors had never won three in a row," Navy coach Billy Lange said. "I told the guys in the locker room that to win this game shows that our program is developing. [The Shoremen] had some runs where I thought, if they came against our team last year ... we probably would've folded."

Led by guard Kyle Stem, who scored a game-high 27 points, Washington (5-5) used a 7-0 run to pull to within 14 early in the second half. Navy (3-4), however, then responded with an 11-0 run of its own to go up by 25. The Midshipmen did it with a lineup that included three freshmen and a sophomore. Kina scored 11 of his points in the first half to help the Midshipmen break out to a 31-13 lead after the first 12 minutes.

Matt Fannin (16 points), Carlton Baldwin (14), Greg Sprink (14), David Hooper (13) and Adam Teague (10) also scored in double figures, as Navy shot a season-high 54 percent from the field and registered its highest points total since putting up 109 against Lehigh in February 1997.

"We just tried to execute our plays, offensively and defensively, and keep our intensity up," Kina said. "Everybody was just working to get better, period."

The effort gave Navy's coach reason for optimism.

"I think that our team has a chance, if we continue to work hard, to make some noise in our league," Lange said.

To do that, however, the Midshipmen still must learn how to play without point guard Corey Johnson, who suffered a knee injury against Air Force in November that could keep him out the rest of the season.

Lange said the goal now is to concentrate on more ball movement, rather than dribble penetration.

Yesterday, despite a significant size advantage inside, the Midshipmen chose mainly to attack from the perimeter, making eight of 21 three-point attempts.

"Even though we had 20 turnovers, we did some better things with the ball," Lange said. "You could see in practice over this last week that our guys were really taking the ball from side to side with much more efficiency."

WASHINGTON COLLEGE-Breslin 1-3 0-0 2, Webb 1-7 5-6 7, Abbate 4-7 1-6 13, Hill 0-0 0-0 0, Stem 7-16 12-15 27, Moore 4-12 2-2 11, Marshburn 2-7 0-0 6, Polyniak 0-1 1-2 1, Green 0-0 0-0 0, Kohlrus 3-6 4-4 10, Blumenthal 1-2 1-2 3. Totals 23-61 26-37 80. NAVY-Fannin 6-9 4-7 16, Teague 4-7 1-2 10, Sprink 4-5 6-6 14, Colbert 2-3 2-2 6, Kina 5-9 6-8 19, Reed 0-1 2-2 2, Hooper 4-9 3-4 13, Boatner 0-0 0-0 0, Green 1-1 1-1 3, Brigham 3-9 1-1 9, Baldwin 5-10 4-6 14, Rhoiney 0-0 0-0 0, White 0-0 0-0 0, Biles 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 34-63 30-39 106. Halftime-Navy 48-31. 3-point goals-Washington College 8-24 (Abbate 4-6, Marshburn 2-4, Moore 1-6, Stem 1-6, Webb 0-2), Navy 8-21 (Kina 3-6, Hooper 2-4, Brigham 2-6, Teague 1-3, Sprink 0-1, Colbert 0-1). Fouled out-Breslin, Colbert, Green. Rebounds-Washington College 30 (Stem 7), Navy 47 (Hooper 10). Assists-Washington College 16 (Abbate, Hill, Polyniak, Stem 3), Navy 18 (Kina 8). Total fouls-Washington College 27, Navy 30. A-542.

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