VESTAL, N.Y.—Visiting Monmouth (5-3) turned 21 turnovers into 32 points and kept Binghamton at bay in a 77-65 win Monday night from the Events Center. The loss, in the homecoming for former Binghamton High standout and Monmouth head coach King Rice, spoiled a terrific performance from BU freshman guard Jordan Reed, who tallied game-highs of 26 points and 10 rebounds.
Playing the second game in a three-day stretch, the Bearcats (2-7) shot 42 percent and won the rebound battle but were undone by the Hawks’ pressure. Monmouth showed efficient interior passing and combined with fast-break layups, the Hawks shot 52 percent for the game, including 56 percent in the second half.
After missing seven of its first eight shots out of the gate, BU picked up its game and the teams were tied 26-26 with 5:15 left in the first half. That’s when Monmouth stepped up its pressure and used a 12-2 run to stake out a 10-point halftime cushion. The Bearcats made just one shot and coughed it up five times in the final 4:27 and the Hawks further hushed a crowd of 2,271 when senior guard Jesse Steele drilled a deep three as the halftime horn sounded, giving the visitors a 38-28 lead.
“We just didn’t seem like we had it tonight,” head coach Tommy Dempsey said. “That late run in the first half was crucial ... to be down 10 at the half was deflating. We showed fight in the second half ... but they extended the lead again. We had some lulls and turnovers obviously were an issue. It’s one thing to turn the ball over but when they turn into layups time and time again ... it’s hard. We fought back and competed to the final buzzer and I’m pleased about that. We just seemed a step slow tonight.”
In the second half, the Bearcats turned the ball over off the opening inbounds but went on a 9-2 run that featured six points from Reed - the final two coming on his second thunderous alley-oop dunk of the evening. That brought BU to within three, 40-37, two minutes into the second half. But Monmouth used an 18-4 run spanning 7:17 to reestablish a double-digit lead. During the run, the Bearcats missed 7-of-8 and committed five costly turnovers. Reed was whistled for three fouls in a 2:02 span and after receiving his fourth foul with 14:54 to play, Dempsey had to sit him down. While Reed was out of the game, the Hawks extended their lead to 13, 52-39. The Bearcats got no closer than 12 the rest of the way.
Reed, who leads the entire America East in both scoring (18.7 ppg.) and rebounding (10.3 rpg.), ranks eighth in the nation in double-doubles and registered his fifth double-double in seven collegiate games. He hit 10-of-17 from the floor and 6-of-8 from the line. He added four steals and two assists in 33 minutes.
Senior guard Jimmy Gray chipped in 10 points and five assists. Junior center Roland Brown had eight points and six rebounds in 19 minutes of work.
Monmouth was led by senior forward Ed Waite, who made 9-of-10 field goals en route to a team-high 23 points.
Binghamton now hits the road for three straight games beginning with a Saturday afternoon game at Bryant.
(Courtesy: BU Athletics)