American lost 72-69 at Loyola on Wednesday, the Eagles' sixth straight defeat. Here are five key plays/sequences from the game.
1. American turns it over early and often
While turnovers aren't the biggest issue American has, they continue to plague the Eagles and are a common ingredient in opponents building leads. This was no different against Loyola, as the Greyhounds capitalized on seven early AU miscues.
2. Sa'eed Nelson's career night
If not for Sa'eed Nelson, the game would have gotten away early from the Eagles. The sophomore has been prolific much of the season, but had the best scoring game of his career with 31 points on 11-for-18 shooting, 7-for-11 from the free-throw line.
3. Loyola has an answer for every American push
American made several pushes in the second half, but couldn't string together stops as Loyola had an answer every time. In particular, freshman big man Brent Holcombe was a problem -- scoring 17 points on 6-for-7 shooting.
4. Late 8-0 American run gets Eagles within a point
With another loss imminent and trailing 70-69, the Eagles showed late-game poise and scored on three straight possession with stops in between to get within a point in the last minute. This was an aplomb we haven't seen a lot from the young team and a sign of maturation, giving AU a chance to pull out the game late.
5. American can't convert on last possession
American had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Sa'eed Nelson passed up what appeared to be an open look in favor of a tough drive to the hoop. And then, after a timeout with 3.6 seconds left, the Eagles could only managed a desperation heave by Nelson that was well off the mark.