Monday, January 7, 2013

Game Recap: Cornell 68, American 60

Below, recaps from Sunday...

WASHINGTON — Cornell’s stifling defense held host American University to just 34 percent shooting from the floor — 24 percent from beyond the 3-point arc — and recorded its third straight road victory, 68-60, over the Eagles on Sunday at Bender Arena.

In the gymnasium where CU coach Bill Courtney launched his coaching career, his Big Red (7-9) made his homecoming a happy one as it won for the third time in four games. The Eagles dropped to 5-10.

Four Big Red players reached double-figures in scoring, led by Johnathan Gray’s 19 points, but it was the defense that made the difference. American made just 22 of 64 shots overall, five of 21 from 3-point range, and turned the ball over 14 times.

Cornell had eight steals, seven in the first half, leading to several easy baskets.

Shonn Miller added 15 points, seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks for the Red, and junior guard Dominick Scelfo chipped in 13 points in his first collegiate start. Freshman Nolan Cressler had 11 points and five rebounds.

Blake Jolivette had 15 points to lead American, which held a 44-36 rebounding edge, including 18 offensive boards.

Cornell led by as many as 16 points in the second half and was able to hold on despite some dicey moments in the final three minutes, mainly due to ill-timed free throw misses. Free-throw woes hurt Cornell in its only loss in its last four, a 72-56 home setback to Bucknell last Wednesday in which it made just eight of 18. Cornell also missed 10 foul shots on Sunday (14-for-24). The Big Red closes out the non-conference slate when it meets Division III foe Old Westbury at 2 p.m. Saturday in Newman Arena.

The American University Eagles lost their final non-conference game of the 2012-13 season, falling, 68-60, to the Cornell University Big Red on Sunday afternoon.

Cornell's Johnathan Gray led all scorers with 19 points. Shonn Miller,Dominick Scelfo and Nolan Cressler were also in double digits for the Big Red.

Blake Jolivette led the Eagles with 15 points and Stephen Lumpkinsrecorded a double-double, with 10 points and 18 rebounds, in the losing effort.

American's largest lead of the game was three points, at 24-21 late in the first half. The Big Red rallied quickly, however, taking a three point lead of their own, 27-24, at halftime.

Cornell dominated the second half, widening the lead to as many as 16 points. American made a charge down the stretch, but the Eagles could get no closer than four points in the final minutes.

American wraps up non-conference play with a 5-10 record. With the win, Cornell moves to 7-9 on the season.

The Eagles begin Patriot League conference play Saturday, Jan. 12, on the road against Colgate. That 2 p.m. ET game will be broadcast on the radio by 1050 AM. American's next home game is Jan. 16 against Lehigh at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Key Stats: American was 22-64 FG (34.4%), 5-21 3s (23.8%) … Cornell shot 44.2% (23-52) with 8 threes on 15 tries … AU’s Stephen Lumpkins was 4-15 from the field … Lumpkins had 18 rebounds, including 8 offensive boards, but struggled to convert those offensive rebounds into points, finishing with 10 … As a team, AU had 18 offensive boards to 10 for Cornell, but that translated into just a 9-7 edge in second chance points … Cornell turned 14 AU turnovers into 18 points; American scored 9 points off 10 Cornell turnovers … Blake Jolivette led AU scorers for the second straight game with 15 … The loss was American’s fifth in six games
Player of the Game: Daniel Munoz 13 points, 7 assists

Box Score (PDF)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In the gymnasium where Bill Courtney launched his coaching career, his team made sure he'd leave a get together with his family and friends a winner. A prolific scorer in high school, then at Bucknell, it was the defense he coached that pushed Cornell to a 68-60 win over American on Sunday afternoon at Bender Arena.

The win, Cornell's third in the last four games, improved the Big Red to 7-9. American fell to 5-10 with the loss.

Four Big Red players reached double figures in scoring, but it was the defense that made the difference. American shot just 34 percent from the floor overall and 24 percent from 3-point range and turned the ball over 14 times. Cornell had eight steals, seven in the first half, to lead to an array of easy points.

Johnathan Gray scored 19 points and grabbed five rebounds to lead the Big Red, who also got 15 points, seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks from Shonn Miller and 13 points from Dominick Scelfo in his first collegiate start. Nolan Cressler chipped in 11 points, five rebounds and two steals and Miles Asafo-Adjei directed the offense with six assists. Errick Peck returned to the court after missing two games with an injury and had two points, four rebounds, four assists and two blocked shots and Devin Cherry came off the bench for eight points and four rebounds.

Blake Jolivette had 15 points to lead American, while Daniel Munoz had 13 points and seven assists and Stephen Lumpkins scored 10 points and grabbed a game-high 18 rebounds. In all, AU held a 44-36 edge on the backboards, including scooping up 18 offensive boards.

Cornell led by as many as 16 points in the second half and was able to hold on despite some dicey moments in the final three minutes, mainly due to ill-timed free throw misses. Each time, the Big Red responded and walked out with its third straight road win, its longest stretch away from Newman Arena since the 2009-10 campaign.

Like it had in its previous two wins, Cornell set the tone in the first three minutes. Miller had two steals and a blocked shot before the first media timeout and Scelfo got the Big Red off in his first collegiate start. He made his first shots to go into the break with 11 points as the visitors went into the half with a 27-24 lead.

American scored the first four points of the second half to take the lead (28-27) before Cornell took over the next nine minutes of action, embarking on a 23-6 run. Five different players scored during the run, including eight in a three minute span by Cressler. The Eagles wouldn't get back within a possession, though it cut the 16-point deficit to four points with 41 seconds left. Miller hit a free throw, and after an American miss, got a run-out dunk to seal the win.

Cornell closes out the non-conference slate when it meets Division III foe Old Westbury on Saturday, Jan. 12 at 2 p.m. in Newman Arena. The Big Red will then open Ivy play with a nationally televised contest against Columbia on Saturday, Jan. 19 at p.m. The game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network.

In American's final game before Patriot League play, the Eagles took on the Cornell Big Red and battled back from a 16-point deficit midway through the second half to close within four of Cornell with just 41 seconds remaining. The Big Red were able to hang on however, eventually securing the, 68-60, win.
For the second-straight game, senior guard Blake Jolivette led American (5-10) in scoring with 15 points. It was his second-straight start of the season. Senior Stephen Lumpkins tallied his second double-double in as many games with 10 points and a career-high 18 rebounds, but was harassed defensively by Cornell (7-9), limiting him to 4-of-15 shooting.
American shot just 34.4 percent from the field and hit only 5-of-21 3-pointers. Cornell also did a good job of capitalizing on the Eagles' mistakes, scoring 18 points off of AU's 14 turnovers.
"Cornell was the aggressor today," said head coach Jeff Jones. "That combined with us not putting the ball in the basket is not a good recipe for winning. We need to execute and put forth an intense effort in order to be successful. The execution was not there for us today."

The first half was a back-and-forth affair in which neither team led by more than six points. Cornell took a 27-24 lead into the break as the duo of Shonn Miller and Johnathan Gray combined for 21 of the Big Red's points.
American scored the first three points of the second half, but Cornell used an 18-3 run to pull away from the Eagles, 45-31.
The Big Red increased the advantage to a game-high mark of 16 at 50-34, with 9:34 remaining, which prompted an American timeout.
After hitting just one 3-pointer in the first half and only two through the first 35 minutes of the game, American got three treys in a four-minute span as well as clutch shots from rookie Jesse Reed and Jolivette to close with four points of Cornell, 64-60.
The Eagles would get no closer however, as Cornell's Miller knocked down two free throws before defensive pressure led to a dunk for the Big Red sophomore and an eventual win.
Senior Daniel Munoz scored in double-figures for the second-straight game with 13 points and tied a season-high with seven assists. Junior center Tony Wroblicky had an active 21 mintues for the Eagles, setting a season-high with four blocks. Sophomore John Schoof extended his streak of games with at least one 3-pointer to 12 games.


Unknown said...

Didn't see the game. Just saw the stats, and read about it, but it seems encouraging. Fewer threes were taken. More steals happened. Lower Op field goal %. Seems like Am U. is a maybe mid-Ivy level team, and we did pretty well. So lets take that as a positive. GO Big Red. That Columbia game is going to be exciting...maybe this style will be effective against less athletic teams, like Coach K said, and we can all happily eat our hats....

Anonymous said...

Looking at just the stats does seems promising but u have to remember to factor in the level of competition . How will we perform agaisnt the better teams because honestly American U was not one of them.

Still haven't had a signature win agaisnt any opponent who was rated or ranked above us. That's a telling sign. Beating up on lesser teams doesn't tell u a lot u just get better practice for the main events!

Hopefully you learn something about your team that you can use in the real match-ups. Sad to say all we have learned is that if the three isnt defended we can make open looks at times. We should have learned more by now.

Looking forward to a great Ivy season, hopefully very successful. More practice next week against Old West(who)

Time to fatten up your stats some more