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Second-half run leads Air Force over Canisius men's basketball


COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. -- A decisive 12-2 run midway through the second half proved to be enough separation for Air Force, as the host Falcons posted a 93-79 win over Canisius Tuesday night in Clune Arena in the Men Against Breast Cancer Showcase. Air Force improves to 2-0 on the year with the win, while the Golden Griffins slipped to 0-2 with the defeat.
Canisius had four players score in double-figures in the loss, led by senior Jermaine Crumpton, who scored a game-high 20 points after he went 6-for-11 from the floor, 2-for-5 from 3-point land and a perfect 6-for-6 from the free-throw line. Sophomore Isaiah Reese had 14 points, highlighted by a career-high four makes from 3-point land, while fellow sophomore Spencer Foley added 14 points and a career-high nine rebounds off the bench. Sophomore Malik Johnson added 10 points and five rebounds the losing effort for the Griffs, who shot 42.9 percent from the field, 31.4 percent from 3-point range and 87.5 percent from the free-throw stripe.
Air Force had all five starters record double-figures in the win, led by Lavelle Scottie and his team-high 18. Ryan Manning added 15 points to the winning effort, while Trevor Lyons was good for 12 points and six boards. The Falcons shot 46 percent from the field, 42.9 percent from behind the arc and 92.7 percent from the charity stripe, connecting on 38-of-41 chances from the line.
Canisius trailed by five at 63-58 with 13:24 left to play after Reese drilled a 3-ball from the near corner off an assist by teammate Takal Molson. From there, Air Force outscored Canisius 12-2 over the game's next 3:55 to stretch its lead to 75-60 with 8:44 left to play. The Griffs were able to whittle Air Force's lead down to six at 82-76 with 2:04 left on the clock, but Lyons scored the Falcons' next five points in the span of 27 seconds to help seal the win for the home team.
"Obviously, we are looking to win every time we step on the floor, but a game like tonight's ends up being good experience for our guys. You're on the road, and you're going to face some adversity in the game, and you want to see how guys react. I thought some guys tonight gave us some good minutes, but as a whole, we need to cut down on the turnovers and be better on the glass. We also need to work at sustaining high-quality play for longer periods of time."
• Tuesday's game marked the first meeting between Canisius and Air Force. The Griffs are now 3-4 all-time against service academy teams.
• Air Force's 38 makes from the free-throw line are the most for a Canisius opponent since Niagara made 40 against the Griffs on Feb. 16, 2005.
• Crumpton, who played in his 90th career game on Tuesday, scored 20-or more points in a game for the 13th time in his career.
• Reese has made multiple 3-point field goals in both games this season and eight times in his career.
Canisius will open the home portion of its 2017-18 schedule on Saturday, Nov. 18, when the team plays host to Youngstown State. Tipoff in the Koessler Athletic Center is set for 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN3, WECK 1230-AM/102.9-FM in Buffalo, through GoGriffs.com and also through the TuneIn Radio app.