Mids come back behind Harris

navy 76 umes 51

3 of his 7 3-pointers help Navy retake lead from Hawks in 1st half

November 26, 2008|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,Special to The Baltimore Sun

The Navy offense has been streaky in the early days of this season. That trend continued last night against UMES, but guard Chris Harris made sure the Midshipmen emerged unharmed.

Harris made seven three-pointers to finish with a game-high 21 points. The junior guard hit three of those long shots in a 20-point run that helped Navy take command en route to a 76-51 victory at Alumni Hall.

Navy (4-1) made seven of its first nine shots from the field for an 18-5 lead and appeared set for an easy game. But the stubborn Hawks battled back and took the lead as Navy went 11:18 without a basket. Keishawn Mayes (13 points) scored 10 in a row to help UMES (0-3) take a 25-24 lead with 1:59 left.

The Midshipmen missed 15 straight from the field before Harris slowly pulled them from their funk. He made two three-pointers in the final two minutes as Navy scored the last nine points of the half for a 33-25 lead at the break. Harris added three more long shots as Navy rolled to a 53-31 edge.

"It was [the] ball movement," Harris said. "Stuff just started to open up. I was wide open on probably 10 to 12 of the 14 shots I took."

Harris went 7-for-14 from the field - all his shots were threes - and began getting some wide-open looks as Navy settled down on offense and began passing better.

"We're too good to go 0-for-15 ... in one span," Navy coach Billy Lange said. "I think it's important that we learn to play with a lead."

The Midshipmen have shot well from long range this season and did it again in this game. Navy made 14 of 31 three-pointers (45 percent), often getting open shots. Adam Teague (14 points) hit four of five, and Kaleo Kina (11 points) made two more.

Navy made good adjustments on defense to shut down Neal Pitt (team-high 18 points) and Mayes in close. The Midshipmen often doubled the Hawks down low, and UMES had problems finding the open man or making the shots.

The Hawks had only five baskets in the second half and six in the game's final 28 minutes.

"They started doubling down there in the paint, and when you double like that, it's sound basketball on their part," UMES coach Frankie Allen said. "But you've got to be able to knock down some shots, and we didn't."

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