Loyola University Chicago turned in one of its best defensive efforts of the year, limiting visiting Indiana State (10-17, 4-11 MVC) to 34.7 percent (17-for-49) shooting from the field en route to a 64-46 victory tonight at Gentile Arena. The Ramblers snap a four-game slide and move to 17-11 overall and 7-8 in the Missouri Valley Conference with the win.
Coach Moser's Thoughts
“That was one of our best defensive performances this season and we never let up. We found a way to win when we weren’t shooting the ball well there early. We defended like crazy. Our backs were to the wall and I was really pleased with how we answered the bell. Ben (Richardson) is the MVP of this game and he didn’t score a point. He did a phenomenal job on Brenton Scott, who is an all-league player.”
How It Happened
Indiana State jumped out to an early 12-6 lead, its largest of the game, as Loyola hit just 2 of its first 6 shots from the field. Aundre Jackson almost single-handedly kept the Ramblers afloat at the offensive end of the floor in the first half, scoring 13 points, and his three-pointer ignited a 10-4 Loyola run that also featured five points from Donte Ingram, that gave LU a brief 16-14 lead.
After a basket by Emondre Rickman tied the game at 16, Jackson rattled off four unanswered points as Loyola reclaimed the lead for good.
A three-pointer by Laquarious Paige with 17:20 remaining in the game got the Sycamores within two (29-27), but a Bruno Skokna three-pointer and Clayton Custer layup pushed the Ramblers’ lead back to seven.
Loyola’s lead was chopped down to 38-34 with 12:02 left to go, but threes from Jackson were part of an 8-0 spurt that helped the advantage swell to 46-34.
Indiana State tried to mount one final push when TJ Bell knocked down a pair of free throws to cut Loyola’s lead to single digits (46-38) with 9 minutes remaining, but the Ramblers used an 18-4 run to bust open a 64-42 lead, their largest of the evening, and rolled to the win.
A Look At The Numbers
- Ben Richardson was phenomenal defensively, limiting Brenton Scott, who entered the game ranked second in the Valley with 16.8 points per game, to just two points on 1 of 9 shooting. Richardson held Scott scoreless until the 5:09 mark of the second half.
- Aundre Jackson scored a team-high 18 points off the bench to pace Loyola, which shot 56 percent from the field in the second half.
- Donte Ingram added 15 points and eight rebounds, while Clayton Custer chipped in 14 points and five assists.
- Milton Doyle ran his streak of consecutive games with 10 or more points to 29 by totaling 12 points to go with seven boards and three assists tonight.
- The 46 points allowed by Loyola is the fewest since holding Alcorn State to 44 points in the season opener on November 11.
- TJ Bell and Laquarious Paige tallied 10 points apiece to lead Indiana State.
Loyola heads downstate Sunday (Feb. 19) to take on Valley co-leader Illinois State at 3 p.m. The game will be televised live on ESPNU.