American fell to Lafayette 90-85 on Saturday, dropping to 6-21, 3-13 in the Patriot League with a week left in the season. Here are five key plays/sequences from the game.
1. Battle of the fabulous freshmen
The Patriot League Rookie of the Year race is going to come down to American's Sam Iorio and Lafayette's Alex Petrie. Both made strong statements Saturday, with Iorio going for 28 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks, and Petrie scoring 27.
2. Lafayette rains 3s on American
Lafayette shot an absurd 12-for-16 from 3-point range to keep American at bay. This is just a small sampling, but the big takeaway is that the Leopards shot it in rhythm all afternoon. Regardless of percentages coming in, a team catching and release open 3s without interference is going to shoot it pretty well.
3. Stacy's best game as an Eagle
First he had two beautiful passes to a cutting Jesse Little for layups in the first half. Then, in the second half, he blocked two shots (shown here). He also scored five points, grabbed three rebounds, and just as importantly, didn't turn the ball over. This was freshman Stacy Beckton Jr.'s best game as an Eagle.
4. Lafayette goes on 10-2 run after Iorio's fourth foul
When Sam Iorio picked up his fourth foul, it was a two-point game. While Iorio returned quickly, he wasn't able to help stem Lafayette's momentum as American couldn't recover from the 10-2 Leopards spurt. This run was a microcosm of how poor AU's defense was all day, as Lafayette scored easily both inside and out.
5. American can't convert late opportunities
American had its chances late, but as has been the case so often this season, missed free throws (two front ends) and a missed open look (a Motuzis 3 off a great find from Sa'eed) kept the Eagles from pulling out a final-minute victory.