Men's Basketball Cannot Catch Navy, 73-67

Box Score (PDF)

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - The Penn men's basketball team kept coming back and coming back during the second half, but never got over the hump and lost a 73-67 decision to Navy Friday night at the Midshipmen's Alumni Hall.

Penn fell to 0-5 on the season, while Navy improved to 4-4.

One of the big assignments for the Quakers on Friday was to keep Navy's Chris Harris off the scoresheet. Thanks primarily to the stellar defensive play of Rob Belcore, that was accomplished for the most part -- Harris finished the game with 16 points, nearly six below his average, and a good number of them came in the final minute at the foul line.

Jordan Sugars, on the other hand, was a huge factor. The Middies' second-leading scorer ended the night with 21 points and 12 rebounds. The duo was also destructive when it mattered most, combining to score Navy's final 17 points in the game (Harris 10, Sugars 7).

Penn was down just 63-60 with less than three minutes left when Zack Rosen knocked down a three-pointer, his fourth of the half and fifth of the game, and the Quakers looked to draw within one or even tie after Harris was called for traveling. However, a pass into the lane went awry, and Sugars collected the loose ball and went the distance for two.

Nearly a minute went by before anyone scored again, when Rosen hit one of two foul shots, but Sugars followed that with another shot in the lane to push Navy's lead to 67-61. Belcore almost immediately responded with a trey, andNavy's lead was again three.

However, the game became a parade to the foul line after that, and unfortunately for Penn the ball kept landing in Harris' or Sugars' hands. They simply would not miss.

The first half featured plenty of back-and-forth and a lot of quick shots, but that did not necessarily translate to a lot of points -- both teams went 12-of-32 from the field, and combined to hit just seven of 27 three-point shots.

Neither team was able to gain more than a four-point lead until late in the stanza, when Navy used an 8-0 run to turn a one-point deficit into a 32-25 lead. Penn was able to get four of the points back before the break, helped largely by a late three-pointer from Rosen, and it was 32-29 at halftime.

Rosen and Jack Eggleston finished as Penn's top scorers, with 18 points apiece, and Rosen also had five rebounds and seven assists while Eggleston had six boards. Mike Howlett led the Quakers with seven rebounds despite spending a lot of time on the bench saddled with foul trouble. Belcore complemented his defensive effort on Harris with 12 points and five assists.

Penn returns to action Tuesday night, hosting Albany at The Palestra at 7 p.m. The Quaker will then be at Monmouth next Saturday before breaking for the University's fall-term exam period.

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Game Notes: Penn tied a season high by hitting 10 three-pointers, and went 7-of-13 beyond the arc in the second half ... Penn had a positive assist/turnover ratio (19/16) for the first time this season ... Penn held Navyto 37.9-percent shootingfrom the field, the worst by an opponent thisseason... Jack Eggleston had 18 points, one shy of a career high ... Zack Rosen had 18 points, giving him 56 in the last three games ... Rosen has led or tied for the lead in team scoring in all three ... Rosen hit five three-pointers, not just a career high but also tied for the most by a Penn player in the Glen Miller coaching era .... The last player to hit five in a game was Tyler Bernardini on March 7, 2008 vs. Cornell ... Rosen also had a season-high seven assists ... Mike Howlett had seven rebounds, giving him 34 in the last three games and 41 in the last four contests ... Rob Belcore had a season-high five assists, giving him nine in the last two games ... Belcore's 12 points marked his second double-figure scoring outing this season ... Junior Dan Monckton tied a career high with six rebounds and finished one point shy of a career best with five ... Freshman Sean Mullan saw his first collegiate action, playing three minutes in the first half ... In addition to Tyler Bernardini and Andreas Schreiber, Penn also played without three other injured players -- sophomore Larry Loughery, freshman Brian Fitzpatrick and senior Justin Reilly (Reilly did not make the trip).

Download: Penn05 (@Navy).pdf