Men's Basketball Rallies vs. American, 68-64
Score: UAlbany 68, American 64
Location: SEFCU Arena in Albany, N.Y.
Records: UAlbany (5-3); American (2-4)
Short story: Men’s basketball wins its third straight, coming back from down 19 in the first half to knock off American 68-64.
- Cameron Healy has hit a three in 40-straight games
- Four Great Danes scored in double-figures
- Malachi de Sousa scored all 10 of his points in the second half
- American led for 33 minutes and 12 seconds of game time
- UAlbany shot 9-10 from the line in the second half
Coach Brown: “I’m proud of our group. I thought they showed tremendous resiliency today, and great toughness in the second half. A lot of teams, down 19, would have packed it in. I thought our guys stuck together, and we were outstanding in the second half. When you have to pay attention to a player as talented as Sa’eed Nelson, you’re going to give something up. We finally took away the drop-off layups and made them fire the ball cross-court and made them take somewhat contested threes. Offensively, we were aggressive in the second half, with more of an attack mentality. We were a completely different group in the second half, and I’m proud of the effort.”
The University at Albany men’s basketball team returned home to SEFCU Arena to host a game following their three-games-in-three-days stretch last weekend at the Bobcats Invitational at Quinnipiac University. Saturday, the Great Danes hosted American University for an early tipoff, due to the UAlbany football team hosting their FCS Playoff first round match against Central Connecticut State in the early afternoon. After falling behind by 19 in the first half, the Great Danes tied the game in the second, to fall behind once again by nine, before winning by four, 68-64.
With the game tied at four, American scored the next four to take an 8-4 lead with 16:38 left in the first. Antonio Rizzuto hit a three to bring the game back within one, and American responded immediately with a three on the other end to go back up by four.
Ahmad Clark hit a jumper and-one to cut the lead to 13-11 with 13:36 left in the first. American started pulling away after that, leading 20-14 with 10:39 to go. The Eagles run extended to 10-0, building to 28-14 before UAlbany scored again.
American led by as many as 19 in the first half, with 6:23 on the clock. For the remainder of the first half, UAlbany outscored the eagles 14-6.
With 4:18 remaining in the first half, Cameron Healy hit his first three-pointer of the game, extending his streak to 40-straight games connecting from behind the arc.
UAlbany closed the first half on a 7-0 run to cut American’s lead to 41-33. The Great Danes had held American scoreless for the final 2:01 of the half. Healy led all scorers with 11 points on 5-9 shooting. American had outrebounded UAlbany 19-12, and outscored UAlbany 13-3 off the bench and 20-10 in the paint.
Clark cut American’s lead to five with a contested layup with 16:27 left in the second half. Rizzuto hit a three on the Danes’ next possession to cut the lead to two. UAlbany’s run had grown to 10-0, while American had suffered a 1-7 shooting drought.
The Danes forced American into a shot clock violation and took over possession with a chance to tie or take the lead. Brent Hank hit a layup to tie the game at 47 with 14:56 to go.
American was held scoreless for more than four-and-a-half minutes. The Eagles broke the streak with a backdoor layup to retake the lead with 13:44 left in the game.
American quickly went up by five before Healy hit another three to cut the lead back to two. The Eagles slowly built up a nine-point lead with 7:39 remaining following a 6-0 run.
Malachi de Sousa hit a pair of free throws with 7:37 remaining to bring UAlbany within seven. de Sousa scored eight-straight points for the Danes to bring UAlbany within one.
With 4:12 remaining, Clark drew a foul on a three pointer. Clark hit all three free throws to give UAlbany its first lead of the day, 64-62. UAlbany had scored the last 11 points, and had held American scoreless for more than four minutes.
American tied the game at 64 on the ensuing possession with a put-back layup, drawing a foul in the process. With 3:08 to go, Healy hit two free throws to put UAlbany up 66-64. An American miss led to a UAlbany rebound and turnover, but then the Great Dane defense recovered and forced an American turnover on the ensuing in-bounds play.
de Sousa hit a short jumper off the glass to put UAlbany up four with 23 seconds remaining to ice the game and give UAlbany a 68-64 victory, their third-straight win.
Healy finished with a game-high 18 points. Rizzuto added 17 on 6-9 shooting, including 5-7 from three. Clark scored 11 and de Sousa scored 10. All of de Sousa’s points came in the second half. After shooting 47.1% in the first half, American regressed to shoot 27.3% in the second. UAlbany outscored American 35-23 in the second half, after allowing 41 points in the first.
Up next: The Great Danes host a double-header with the women’s team on Wednesday, December 4. The women will play FDU-Florham at 5:00 p.m., followed by the men hosting Yale at 7:30 p.m.