Chicago – Last time Loyola played Wright State; the Raiders shot an impressive 56 percent against a weak Loyola defense and creamed the Ramblers 81-55.
Today Loyola brought their good defense to the game, but couldn’t find their offense as Wright State gets a big road win 59-47.
Wright State’s tough defense held the Ramblers to 35.8 percent shooting (19-53), including a meager 15.9 percent from 3-point land.
“You can’t have 17 turnovers and shoot 34 percent. Offensively that was as poorly as we played all year. Give Wright State the credit on that, we were just beat to the punch,” said Loyola Coach JimWhitesell. “We got off to a good start, then after that we had problems defending them for awhile.”
Things started off good for Loyola (13-9, 4-5 HL) when Patrick Kye put in a lay-up and Majak Kou hit a 3-pointer to give the Ramblers a 5-0 lead.
After a lay-up by Wright State’s Vaughn Duggins, Kye hit a jumper to go up 7-2.
After that the wheels fell off the wagon for the Ramblers as Wright State (14-8, 7-2 HL) started to get into gear.
Wright State’s Drew Burleson hit a jumper, then got a pass from Duggins under the basket and layed it in to make it 7-6.
At the 14:41 mark Duggins hit a 3-pointer to give the Raiders a one point lead at 14-13 and Loyola never led again in the game.
At the end of the first half Wright State let a little more air out of Loyola’s tires when Scottie Wilson got a pass from Wood and put in a 15 foot jumper right as the buzzer went off to give the Raiders a 35-25 lead..
Loyola came out of half time on fire and went on an 8-0 run to cut Wright State’s lead to two points at 35-33.
DaShaun Wood hit a 3-pointer at the 16:31 mark to stop the bleeding for the Raiders.
The Raiders built the lead back up to as high as nine points before Loyola made one more run at the Raiders. At the 2:34 mark J. R. Blount was fouled by Burleson, he made both foul shots to cut Wright State’s lead to four points at 51-47 with just 2:34 to go.
That was the last basket Loyola would make in the game.
Just 12 seconds later Burleson hit a lay up and then the Raiders scored six more points to get what used to be a rare road win. But this year the Raiders are 2-2 on the road and still just a half game behind first place Butler in the Horizon League.
Butler won today on the road at Detroit 68-58.
Wright State’s Coach Brad Brownell thought that the Raiders caught Loyola at the perfect time after they lost an over-time heart-breaker at home to the number 11 ranked Butler Bulldogs.
“We maybe caught Loyola at a good time after a really disappointing loss and a tough game against Butler,” explained Brownell
There were only three players who scored in double figures.
Loyola’s Blake Schlib scored 14 points, Wright State’s Wood had 13 points and Brown had 10 points.
“We had half of the equation down. We were getting stops but we were not making them pay for that. Teams go cold, but eventually they go on a run. But with out us scoring they were able to pull away,” explained Loyola’s Leon Young.
*Wood and Burleson both raved about the chicken served for the pre-game meal at Embassy Suites. Look for chicken to be served again at future pre-game meals.
*Chairmen of the Boards…Loyola came into the game as the top rebounding team in the Horizon League. Today they out-rebounded the Raiders 37-34.
*Loyola has a slim lead in the all-time series 14-13.
*Loyola’s next game is at Youngstown State on January 29th at 7 p.m.
*Wright State’s next game is at Green Bay on January 29th at 8 p.m.