The second half brought more inconsistency from our basketballers. Army started the second half on fire. Some nice hoops by Colin Harris and Cory Sinning reduced the FDU lead to 8 (40-32). However, Army found itself in serious foul trouble, committing their seventh with almost 13 minutes left in the second half. After FDU made a couple of trips to the free throw line, Mensah Peterson of FDU hit two 3-pointers, and Fairleigh Dickinson led 54-33 with about 10 minutes left. Army never made it close again--- trading buckets with Fairleigh Dickinson for the rest of the game, and incurred yet another Division I defeat.
Army was thoroughly outclassed by a much more talented team. While Army's interior defense was solid, holding the very talented Gordon Klaiber of FDU to 8 pts (he averages 16.5), FDU's 3 starting guards (Timberlake, Trent and Peterson) all posted double figures and controlled the game.
Colin Harris was the best Army player on the court by far. He led the squad in points (15), rebounds (5) and assists (4) and played a solid all-around game. Travis Owsley and Jimmy Sewell added 10 and 9 points, respectively. On the other hand, Matt Bell, averaging 17.6 PPG coming into the game, never really got untracked. He did not score until about 6 minutes were left in the game, and finished with a season-low 5 points. For the Black Knights to be successful, Matt Bell needs to be more involved in the offense.
The team has two more "preseason" contests to start off the New Year. They face the tough Big Red of Cornell University on Sunday afternoon, January 2. Two days later Army faces Cornell's Ivy League travel partner, Columbia. Both games are at West Point in Christl Arena. Hopefully, Army can start off 2005 with more consistent efforts and a couple of wins leading into their Patriot League opener next Saturday (January 8) at Colgate.
Wishing all of you a very happy and healthy New Year!