Air Force Falcons head coach Dave Pilipovich opened his first full season at the helm with a 76-65 victory over the Army Black Knights in the All-Military Classic opener in Charleston, S.C., on Saturday. Senior guard Michael Lyons scored a game-high 19 points.
Lyons, though, struggled from the field, connecting on just three of 13 field goal attempts while making 12 of 13 free throws. He was essential in helping the Falcons overcome a 15-point deficit in the second quarter, which was fueled by a 12-6 run at one point. Nine of his points came during that stretch.
Todd Fletcher was the Falcons' best shooter, sinking seven of 10 shots (including two of three from beyond the arc) for 16 points. Taylor Broekhuis and Kyle Green added 14 and 11 points. Broekhuis and Mike Fitzgerald led the Falcons with six rebounds each.
Ella Ellis led Army with 16 points, but his team shot just 36.5 percent from the field. The Falcons, on the other hand, were able to make 50 percent of their field goal attempts.
The Falcons (1-0) will play The Citadel Bulldogs (1-0) in the championship game on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. MT.