“At some point, I think as a coach, I’ve got to quit being stubborn and figure out another way for us to be able to stay in games and guard better.”
The Raiders overcame a six-point halftime deficit and took a 48-41 lead with 13:39 to go.
They still had a 55-48 edge with 10:15 left.
But Long Beach went on a 12-2 surge for a 60-57 lead with 7:32 to go.
Trailing by seven, the Raiders made one last push.
A three-point play by Grant Basile cut it to 68-64. Long Beach scored, but Trey Calvin knocked down a 3 to make it 70-67 with 5:08 to go.
But Long Beach surged to a 76-68 edge with 2:58 left and was never threatened again.
Tanner Holden had 21 points, tallying 70 in the three games. Basile scored 19 of his 21 points in the second half after experiencing early foul trouble.
Calvin shook his slump — 3 of 21 from the field and 1 of 12 on 3s in the last two games — to score 12 points.
Back-up sophomore guard Andrew Welage surpassed his career high of six points on a 3 with eight minutes to go in the first half, finishing with 11 overall.
And 6-foot-9 freshman A.J. Braun showed some promise while seeing his first action, scoring a combined 22 points in the three games.
Top subs Alex Huibregtse and Riley Voss missed the tourney because of injuries.
“We just got pushed around,” Nagy said. “Went the second half yesterday (against James Madison) and the first half today without anybody getting an offensive rebound. And it isn’t like we were shooting it great.
“We went a whole game, back-to-back halves, with no one getting an offensive rebound. All the things we’re used to — being great at rebounding, being great at defense — we have none of it right now. And on top of that, we’re not very good offensively. That’s a bad combination.”
Thursday, Dec. 2
Wright State at Purdue Fort Wayne, 7 p.m., ESPN+, 103.9