WEST POINT – Four Cadets scored in double-figures as the Army West Point men’s basketball team claimed a 77-69 victory over Lafayette in a Patriot League contest at Christl Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Cayne Edwards paced the Black Knights’ (6-9, 1-1 Patriot League) scoring attack that shot the ball at a 53-percent clip from the field against the Leopards (3-10, 0-2 Patriot League). The senior had a career-high 16 points on 8-of-8 shooting in just 16 minutes of action. Matt Wilson enjoyed similar success down low, putting up 12 points to pair with a team-best eight rebounds.
Alex King ended the afternoon with 13 points, while Tommy Funk notched a double-double with and a game-high 10 assists. Tucker Blackwell chipped in with nine points off the bench.
The first half against Lafayette played out similarly to Wednesday’s outing versus Bucknell. Army was strong on both sides of the ball, shooting at a 53-percent clip from the field, while limiting the opposition’s quality looks at the basket.
The ball was being moved around effectively and the Black Knights had 14 assists on 17 made shots. Funk manned the well-oiled offense by dishing out seven assists, and Edwards was the primary beneficiary after going 5-for-5 for 10 points.
Army’s hot start resulted in a 17-point advantage at the half, 42-25. The 42 points tied the second-most scored in an opening half this season by the Cadets.
In the second stanza, Lafayette came out swinging with a 9-2 run to pull within 10. However, the Black Knights’ lead grew to 15, 49-34, following a John Emezie 3-pointer and a score inside by Edwards with 14:58 on the clock.
The Army lead hovered around 10 points for much of the half as the two sides began to trade baskets. With 3:08 left to play, Justin Jaworski buried a shot from deep to help the Leopards pull within nine, 69-60. That Jaworski three sparked a 9-2 run and a pair of Army turnover ensued. It was a five-point game with less than two minutes to go, but the Cadets closed out the contest at the foul line after making six of eight free throws in the final 58 seconds of play to hold on for the 77-69 win.
The Black Knights will head up to Massachusetts on Wednesday to take on Boston U. in a Patriot League meeting slated to tip at 7 p.m.