BU comeback not enough, Navy wins, 79-74, behind a strong first half

Boston University trailed Navy for most of the game—all but 21 seconds, to be precise. But with 1:06 left in regulation, freshman guard Jonas Harper, junior forward Tyler Scanlon and sophomore guard Andrew Petcash connected three consecutive 3-pointers over the next 48 seconds to make it a one-possession game.

The remaining 18 seconds proved to be too short for the home team, however, as the Midshipmen defeated the Terriers, 79-74, at Case Gym on Saturday afternoon.

“The thing that has hurt us the most hurt us today, and that’s been our inability to stop people,” BU head coach Joe Jones said.

Navy (11-18, 8-10 Patriot League) launched the game on a senior-to-senior connection from Hasan Abdullah to Dominick Antonelli led to a wide-open 3-pointer from the left corner. That would be the story of the first half.

The Midshipmen abused the BU (14-17, 7-11 PL) zone defense, knocking down their first seven field-goal attempts before back-to-back steals by sophomore guard Isaiah Burnett gave Navy its largest lead of the half at 41-24 with 5:08 left in the half.

“They did a good job of how we were guarding ball screens,” Jones said. “We weren’t really playing with energy in the zone.”

Energy was an issue not only defensively, but also with the team’s effort, Jones said. “The thing that was really frustrating in the second half [was that] we didn’t get to loose balls at all,” he said. “We made no plays.”

To win, the Terriers will need to play the entire game with the same energy that they showed during the final minutes of Saturday’s contest, Jones said. “In the last three or four minutes, when we feel like we’re gonna lose, we start to play with unbelievable energy and desire,” he said. “We don’t play like that consistently enough.”

BU entered halftime trailing 46-35, while allowing 72 percent shooting from the field.

“This was kinda this disappointing because I thought we were moving in the right direction, but tonight, right from the start, we weren’t really focused defensively,” Jones said. “We’ve got to find ways to get stops.”

The Terriers are slated to host either Holy Cross or Loyola Maryland in the first round of the 2019 Patriot League Tournament on Tuesday. Jones said he hopes the win-or-go-home atmosphere will motivate his team.

“We’ve gotta be ready to go Tuesday,” Jones said. “We’ve got to come ready.”

Scanlon contributed with game-high 18 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Junior forward Max Mahoney added 14 points. Abdullah finished with 7 points and 9 assists, while Wieck and Carter Jr. led Navy’s scoring with 15 points each.

Mahoney became the 37th Terrier to join the 1,000-point club and passed Arturo Brown (1,000) to No. 35 on BU’s all-time scoring list.

“It was as bad as it’s been all year today,” Jones said.

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