We haven’t talked much about college hoops this year on After Action because, frankly, we just don’t get to see any games. I’d love to follow Air Force, Navy and Army closer, but it’s hard to write about teams you never actually watch. One of these days I’ll shell out the extra money for CBS College Sports, which actually broadcast this weekend’s Army-Navy game. But in the meantime, we follow the hoops squads from afar and do what we can.
Nevertheless, this was a pretty special weekend for service academy basketball, and Navy’s and Air Force’s victories deserve some attention. Also happening this weekend was the Fight For the Troops 2 at Fort Hood, which was televised live on Spike TV. But thanks to a piece of $#@% DVR, I only saw the main event fight. Sigh.
Navy beats Army
Both Navy’s men’s and women’s teams won against Army in a doubleheader broadcast on CBS College Sports, the channel I am too cheap to pay for. This has been a pretty dreadful year for Navy men so far, but to their credit they went up to West Point and edged the Black Knights in an 85-81 thriller. Junior forward Jordan Sugars poured in 25 points (and played all 40 minutes) to lead five Mids in double figures. The victory was Navy’s first in Patriot League play, and the Mids are now 6-15 overall.
Army hasn’t had a winning season since 1985 and falls to 10-10 (2-3 Patriot) with the loss to Navy. The dream is still alive, Cadets. Win five of your last nine games and the streak is over.
Air Force wins
Air Force beat Wyoming 72-51 on Saturday for their second Mountain West Conference victory of the season. Why is this newsworthy? Because Air Force won only a single MWC game last year, and zero in 2008-2009. The 21-point margin of victory was Air Force’s highest since 2008. At 11-7 (2-3 MWC), the Falcons find themselves in sixth place in the MWC, not too shabby for a squad that’s been a punching bag for the past couple years.
Guillard pummels Dunham
Speaking of punching bags, Evan Dunham got beat like one by Melvin Guillard in the main event of Fight for the Troops 2 on Saturday night at Fort Hood. Referee Mario Yamasaki called the fight at 2:58 of the first round after an impressive striking exhibition by Guillard left Dunham battered against the cage.
The fight was short and totally dominated by Guillard, who was considered the underdog coming in. After landing some early strikes and escaping some takedown attempts, Guillard landed a right hand that put Dunham on the canvas. He followed with an uppercut and a flurry of knees sealed the TKO win.
The UFC put up an Octagon in the middle of an aircraft hanger (probably similar to the blimp hanger that Louis Gossett Jr. and Richard Gere fought in at the end of “An Officer and a Gentleman”) and distributed free tickets to approximately 800 soldiers at Hood. Aside from giving the troops at Hood some well-deserved entertainment, the event raised money for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, with the UFC airing stories of service members who are battling back from life-changing traumatic wounds sustained in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.