WEST POINT, N.Y. - Freshman Kyle Wilson led a season-high five Army players in double figures with 18 points as the Black Knights (5-5) scored a 96-67 win over Maine (3-7) Friday night at Christl Arena. Army improved to 3-0 at home this season and has won seven straight non-conference home games.
Wilson knocked down seven of his nine shots, including a 3-for-5 showing from three-point range. Senior Ella Ellis netted 17 points, including a team-high four three-pointers, while freshman Larry Toomey scored a career-high 11 points. Rookie Kyle Toth and junior Josh Herbeck added 11 and 10 points, respectively. Freshman Kevin Ferguson scored nine points and grabbed six rebounds, both career highs, while rookie Tanner Plomb led the Black Knights with eight rebounds.
Army assisted on 20 of its 33 field goals. The Black Knights shot 33-for-59 (.559) for the game, including a 13-for-27 (.481) from three-point range. Maine shot 40.9 percent (27-for-66) for the game, but were just just 6-for-21 (.286) from deep. Army outrebounded the Black Bears, 39-31.
Justin Edwards led Maine with 18 points. Alasdair Fraser grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds.
Army used a 30-6 run to end the first half, breaking open a two-point game.
The Black Knights came out firing from three-point range, knocking down four of their first six attempts to take a 12-8 lead with 16:54 to go in the half. Four different players hit shots for the Black Knights. Maine scored the next three-points to make it a one-point game, but back-to-back baskets by Larry Toomey and Jordan Springer extended Army's lead back to five points at 16-11 with 15:15 to go.
The Black Bears again had an answer, trimming the lead to 16-15, but Army scored the six to take a 22-15 lead at the 11:45 mark. Jon Mesaghna buried a triple to cap a 7-2 Maine run that pulled the Black Bears with a basket at 24-22, but a three-pointer by Toth ignited Army's first-half ending run. The Black Knights made six triples during the spurt. The Army defense limited the Black Bears to only two field goals (2-10) in the final 8:54.
Wilson led all scorers with 13 points, including a three-point play with less than three seconds left in the half. Herbeck also reached double figures in the opening stanza. The Black Knights shot 20-for-32 (.625) in the half, going 10-for-16 both inside and outside the three-point line.
The Black Knights scored the first basket of the second half and quickly opened up a 30-point lead at 58-28. Maine cut the deficit to 25 points on two occasions, but Army scored the next eight points to push their lead to 33 with 16:19 remaining. Maine cut the lead to 29, ending a three-minute, 38-second stretch without a field goal on a dunk by Edwards.
Army answered back with a 10-3 spurt to open its largest lead of the half at 78-42. Army would match that lead at 80-44, but the Black Bears scored 15 of the next 18 points, including 10 in a row, to get back within 24 at 83-59. That was as close as the score would get, as Army cruised to the 96-67 victory.
Army will take a week off from competition for West Point's term-ending exams before hosting Division III Rosemont on Saturday, Dec. 22. Tip-off is at 1 p.m. The game is the Black Knights' last game before another week off for the holidays. Army will take a two-game road swing through Texas, facing Texas A&M on Dec. 29 and Houston Baptist on Dec. 31.
Game Notes: Army has won its last four home games by an average of 22.8 points … the Black Knights have scored at least 85 points in those four games … Army is now 2-0 against Maine all-time … the Black Knights have won nine of their last 15 non-league games … Army is now 34-8 since 2004-05 when making at least half their shots … the Black Knights' bench scored 49 points … Army has outscored its opponent's bench in every game this season.