Jan. 11, 2013
CHICAGO - Reggie Arceneaux hit a three-pointer with 1:35 remaining to cap an 11-point, second-half rally and Wright State (13-4, 4-0 Horizon) held on down the stretch for a 62-61 victory over Loyola University Chicago (10-6, 1-3 Horizon) tonight at Gentile Arena. The loss is the Ramblers' second in a row at home and those defeats have come by a combined three points.
"Tonight, we came out ready to play and were in a position to win, but in close games, you've got to make plays," Loyola head coach Porter Moser said. "That's two games in a row at home where we've run into a great individual performance and just couldn't get stops when we needed them. Give Wright State credit."
In a game that featured the top two defensive teams in the Horizon League, and two of the best in the nation in terms of scoring defense, Loyola rode some hot shooting from behind the arc (4 for 7), coupled with a stingy effort that held Wright State to 9 of 28 from the field, including 2 of 15 from long distance, to take a 33-23 lead at the half.
The Raiders used a pair of threes from Arceneaux, two of his six on the night, to race out to a 10-4 lead, but back-to-back triples by Devon Turk midway through the half put the host Ramblers on top for the first time in the game, at 17-14.
After Wright State rallied to even the contest, consecutive layups by Jeff White kicked off a half-closing 16-6 run that was punctuated by a White three-pointer, as the Ramblers took a double-digit lead into halftime.
Loyola would lead by as many as 11 (36-25) early in the second half, but another three by Arceneaux began the Raiders' comeback and the sophomore guard's fourth three of the evening brought his team within a point (40-39).
However, the Ramblers answered with three-pointers of their own on their next two possessions, both courtesy of Turk, and a jumper by Ben Averkamp stretched the Loyola advantage to 48-41.
Christian Thomas, who recorded his second double-double of the season tonight, drained a pair of free throws at the 6:52 mark to give Loyola an eight-point edge (55-47), but once again Arceneaux sparked a Raider rally with a three-pointer as Wright State closed out the game with a 15-6 run to stay undefeated in Horizon League play.
Loyola wasn't without chances to win the game in the closing minute after Arceneaux's go-ahead three-pointer with 1:35 to play. After a missed three-point attempt, Loyola grabbed the offensive board, but had the put-back blocked. Loyola got a critical stop on Wright State's ensuing possession, but the Ramblers were unable to convert a field goal attempt in the paint in the final seven seconds.
Averkamp totaled a team-high 15 points, while Turk finished with 14 points and hit 4 of 6 shots from three-point territory. Thomas recorded his second career double-double, finishing with 13 points and 11 rebounds.
Arceneaux finished with a game-high 29 points and Cole Darling pitched in 12 points and 11 boards for Wright State.
Loyola looks to bounce back when it visits UIC on January 16.