Men's Basketball

Game Schedule
August 14 - All-Star Italy, 12:30 pm CT
Rome, Italy - Recap | Gallery
August 18 - Pallacanestro Bassano Del Grappa, 11:30 am CT
Bassano del Grappa, Italy - Recap | Gallery
August 20 - Zepa Marostica, 1:00 pm CT
Dueville, Italy - Recap | Gallery
August 22 - Legnano Basket, 1:00 pm CT
Legnano, Italy - Recap | Gallery
Men's Basketball Blog: Following The Ramblers In Rome

First Quarter Run Helps Loyola To 82-67 Win Over Legnano

Aug. 22, 2012
LEGNANO, Italy - Loyola University Chicago used a 20-4 run midway through the first quarter to turn a one-point deficit into a 13-point lead as it earned an 82-67 victory over Legnano Basket tonight. The win gives the Ramblers a 3-1 record on their four-game trip to Italy and tonight senior forward Ben Averkamp had his best performance of the trip, collecting 21 points and 10 rebounds.

"I thought Ben played his best game of the trip tonight," Loyola head coach Porter Moser said. "Tanner (Williams) gave us a big lift off the bench, Kody (Williams) provided us with some tremendous energy as did Devon (Turk). Devon has the ability to change the game because of his shooting ability and tonight proved that. I sometimes forget that Cully (Payne) has been out for two years and need to be more patient with him. All in all, this trip was beneficial for our team and served as a great bonding experience. Italy is a beautiful country and the people here couldn't have been more welcoming to our program."

Legnano held an early 9-6 led before a basket by Averkamp ignited the game-changing 20-4 spurt, one that featured an impressive display by freshman guard Devon Turk, who at one point tallied eight straight points for the Ramblers, six coming courtesy of the three-point shot.

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Como Blog: The team wrapped up its sightseeing by touring Lake Como via boat

Aug. 21, 2012
COMO, Italy - After not returning to the hotel until after midnight following last night's victory over Zepa Marostica in a non-air conditioned arena that had temperatures exceeding 100 degrees, the Loyola men's basketball team boarded the bus this morning (Tuesday), bound for Como.

Upon arrival in Como after the nearly four-hour drive, which also included a stop for lunch, the Ramblers checked into their hotel which is just steps from the picturesque Lake Como and headed for the boat dock for a private tour of the lake with Elena, our fabulous and accommodating tour guide who has been with us from day one in Rome and who also happens to be a native and current resident of Como.

Needless to say, Elena and Lake Como didn't let the team down. Everyone was awed by the beauty of the lake during our one-hour ride to Bellagio, and Elena also pointed out many of the interesting sights along the way, including the former Versace villa, and homes also belonging to Richard Branson, the owner of Virgin Records, and actor George Clooney. The afternoon tour also included the sighting of villas where scenes from movies such as Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Ocean's Twelve and Casino Royale were filmed.

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Fast Start Propels Loyola Past Zepa Marostica, 92-39

Aug. 20, 2012
DUEVILLE, Italy - Jordan Hicks scored 10 of the team's first 12 points as Loyola University Chicago rolled to a 92-39 victory over Zepa Marostica tonight in game three of the team's four-game trip to Italy. Hicks was named most valuable player of the game after scoring 14 points, 12 of which came in the first half, and grabbing five rebounds. The win moves the Ramblers to 2-1 on the trip.

"You really have to give credit to Jordan (Hicks)," Loyola senior forward Ben Averkamp said. "He set the tone for us by being aggressive on offense and finding a rhythm from the start."

Loyola, which utilized its third starting lineup combination in as many games, wasted no time taking control of the contest as Jeff White's lay-up after a steal to open the scoring was followed by seven straight points from Hicks as the Ramblers built an early 9-0 edge. Zepa Marostica sliced into the Ramblers' lead, cutting it to 15-12 before Thomas reeled off five straight points and Joe Crisman converted a conventional three-point play to extend the advantage to 23-12.

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Venice Blog: Jordan Hicks blogs about game two of the Ramblers's trip to Italy and the team's visit to Venice

Aug. 19, 2012
VENICE, Italy - I'm back but this time I'm writing to you from almost 5,000 miles away in Italy, as you already probably knew. The trip to Italy has been the trip of a lifetime for myself and for the rest of the team. I had never been out of the country until now and realize that I may have to invest in a few vacations to Europe, as I get older.

Back to basketball though, we played a little bit of a tougher foe on Saturday night in Pallacanestro Bassano del Grappa; quite the mouthful, I know. This team gave us a little bit of a tougher test and playing in only our second-ever contest together, it showed. No matter the case, it was our game to win and after fighting back to take the lead, a rough stretch and late run put Bassano past us. Still, with the loss, there were a lot of positives to take from the game for veterans and newcomers alike and as we head into our third game the arrow is going up. I am restlessly counting down the hours until the next game Monday night and I know the rest of the guys are too.

On a lighter note, today we traveled to Venice, which is one of the most amazing cities I have ever visited. You never really think about it until you actually go there and see it with your own eyes but an entire city on an island with streets of water is one of those unique and rare places and everyone lucky enough to visit there should really take the time to appreciate what a cool place it is.

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Late Run Sends Pallacanestro Bassano del Grappa Past Loyola, 74-65

Aug. 18, 2012
BASSANO DEL GRAPPA, Italy - Pallacanestro Bassano del Grappa closed the game on a 20-6 run to erase a five-point deficit and earn a 74-65 victory over Loyola University Chicago this evening. The loss is the Ramblers' first on their four-game tour and comes on the heels of a 92-56 win against All-Star Italy.

"We were still sped up executing which forced us into 21 turnovers and with young guys, the problem was they were trying too hard," Loyola head coach Porter Moser said. "Tonight, I thought Kody Williams gave us great energy at both ends of the floor. We had a great 15-minute run in the second half, but part of the learning process is understanding how to finish off games and we will have plenty of teachable moments when we break down the last five minutes of this game. The atmosphere in the arena tonight was incredible and was a great experience for us. Part of being a good defensive team is the ability to play possession by possession. It's good to be making these mistakes in August rather than November."

Loyola opened the contest by switching up the starting lineup from Tuesday's opener, this time sending Cully Payne, Kody Williams, Jordan Hicks, Matt O'Leary and Ben Averkamp onto the floor.

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The Florence Days: Loyola visits Florence and Pisa to end the week

Aug. 17, 2012

Wednesday was a busy day for the team as it toured the city of Florence and all of its amazing attractions and shops. The first stop on the tour was the Accademia Gallery to get a glimpse of Florence's most famous masterpiece, Michelangelo's David. Once the team soaked in the works of art in the Accademia, it went on a walking tour of the city making stops at the colorful Florence Cathedral and the Ponte Vecchio, which is the oldest bridge in the city, built in 1345!

There were plenty of lighthearted moments as the team made its way through town as several players stopped to have their caricatures drawn. Two players, who will go unnamed to protect their identities, had their caricatures produced together and the artist apparently thought these two Ramblers were more than teammates and illustrated that with his drawing. After the tour of Florence, the team received some free time to shop and explore Florence on its own before dinner.

Today (Friday) the team started the day with a quick breakfast before boarding the bus for Pisa. Although you could hardly describe the weather as cool at any point on the trip, today was without question the hottest day since the Ramblers have been in Italy, with temperatures pushing 100 degrees.

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Ramblers wrap up stay in Rome, win opening game on tour

Aug. 15, 2012
Because of yesterday's game, we took a day off from the blog.

Tuesday morning, the players received of a special tour of and enlightening presentation from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, as they were educated on the tasks of the FAO and some of the social justice issues they face.

Following the FAO presentation, the team headed to another special presentation from Mario Mesquita, the Deputy Chief of Mission of the United States Embassy to the Holy See. The U.S. Embassy works in partnership with the Pope on issues such as HIV/AIDS, world hunger and human rights.

After a few hours to relax and recharge for its first game of the trip against All-Star Italy, the team returned to the hotel to rest before a healthy pre-game meal of chicken, pasta, salad and vegetables.

Ben Averkamp, Jordan Hicks, Joe Crisman, Christian Thomas and Cully Payne earned the starting nod for the team's first game on this tour, but in the first few minutes, Loyola struggled to take care of the basketball and fell behind 10-7 before embarking on a 15-3 run to take a commanding 22-13 lead it would never relinquish.

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Balanced Attack Leads Loyola To 92-56 Victory Over All-Star Italy

Aug. 14, 2012
ROME - Matt O'Leary led five players in double-figures with a team-high 22 points and Loyola University Chicago overcame some early jitters to erase an early deficit en route to a 92-56 victory over All-Star Italy tonight. The Ramblers connected on 13 of 25 shots from three-point range en route to the victory. Tonight's game, which was played under FIBA rules, was the first of four contests for Loyola on its 14-day trip to Italy.

"I was very pleased with our energy level tonight. Whomever came in brought us energy," Loyola head coach Porter Moser said. "We had some jitters early on but I thought once we settled in we did some good things. We hit 13 threes tonight, which is something that would've taken us four games to do a year ago. I really liked how unselfishly we played. We have to get better defensively, but this is a starting point and that is the beauty of this trip. Tomorrow we head to Florence and we will watch some film and see our mistakes and where we need to improve."

Ben Averkamp, Jordan Hicks, Joe Crisman, Christian Thomas and Cully Payne earned the starting nod for the team's first game on this tour, but in the first few minutes, Loyola struggled to take care of the basketball and fell behind 10-7 before embarking on a 15-3 run to take a commanding 22-13 lead it would never relinquish.

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Ben Averkamp blogs about the team's first two days in Italy

Aug. 11, 2012
Greetings from Rome! Our 14-day trip began with a bang Thursday afternoon. Minutes after we had taken off from O'Hare, our plane's right wing was struck by lightning (only feet from my seat). Thankfully this was the most eventful part of the nine-plus hour plane ride.

After landing around 8:00 a.m. local time, we wasted no time and began our excursion around the city. Right when we got off the bus, Nick Osborne quickly made friends with a gypsy and bought himself an Italian flag-colored fedora. Fr. Stefano then led us to a small restaurant for a light breakfast. After, we continued to the Roman Forum and the to the Colosseum. For all of us, the Colosseum was quite an experience. It is amazing how despite its poor condition, it can handle so many visitors each day. Later in the afternoon, after some much-needed rest, we headed west from our hotel see the church of St. Ignatius of Loyola. We explored the city around the church for a little while and then we feasted for dinner. And when I say feast, it was quite a meal (and celebration for Coach Malnati's birthday). The three-course meal topped off what had been a real long day for each of us.

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Photo Galleries
Day One | Day Two | Day Three | Day Four | Loyola vs. All-Star Italy | Days Five and Six | Days Seven and Eight
Loyola vs. Pallacanestro Bassano Del Grappa | Venice Tour | Day 11 - Treviso | Loyola vs. Zepa Marostica | Loyola at Lake Como
Loyola vs. Legnano



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