Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Air Force Basketball notes: Coggins has off night before big following

By Brent Briggeman Updated: February 16, 2014 at 7:43 am 0

The good news for Tre' Coggins is he had plenty of friends and family around to give him a boost after a rough game.

The bad news is he had that game with all of them out to see it.

Coggins, a Southern California native, had about 30 people on hand to watch Saturday's game and he turned in his second straight poor shooting performance during this two-game trip to his home state. He finished 2 of 14 from the field with nine points after going 1 of 12 at San Jose State on Wednesday.

"I'm kicking myself right now," said Coggins, "but once we get on that flight I'll be getting ready for next week."

Coggins was clearly a focal point of San Diego State's defense after scoring 29 points in the teams' first meeting of the season.

Air Force coach Dave Pilipovich said he never considered going to a different option late in the game despite Coggins' slump.

"No, he's the guy," Pilipovich said. "We need to get him some more reps, I mean, he's only a sophomore, too. He needed to get this experience, too. He didn't have this last year.

"He's going to have these nights," Pilipovich added. "He played his rear end off. He had four assists and one turnover in 37 minutes against constant pressure. Yes, he went 2 of 14, but give credit to their defense."

Intentionally short-handed in practice

There was an explanation for some of Air Force's solid numbers against San Diego State. The Falcons committed just eight turnovers, their fewest in a conference game this season, and they were outrebounded just 35-34, with an 11-10 edge on the offensive glass.

To get there, the Falcons ran rebounding drills in which the opposition would have six against their five and the same was true in practicing against the press.

"They come at you with so many guys and they're so long," Pilipovich said. "It's something we can't duplicate in practice."

Also...

The first points were scored on a Marek Olesinski 3-pointer 3 minutes, 3 seconds into the game ... San Diego State didn't commit a turnover for the first 8 minutes, 19 seconds but had four at halftime and nine in the game ... Air Force is now 4-81 all-time against ranked teams.

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