Marcus Taliaferro, Athletics Communications Assistant
CHICAGO – The University of St. Francis’ men’s basketball team got off to a hot start in this Tuesday’s afternoon exhibition match-up against Loyola Chicago but were unable to overcome the Ramblers hot scoring in the second half and fall, 92-55, at LUC’s Gentile Arena.
The Saints opened this afternoon’s exhibition game on a 6-0 run after guard Eric Ting(Sr/Taoyuan, Taiwan) converted an and-one to give the Saints a 6-0 lead with 18:17 to go in the half. The Saints would continue to add to their early lead after an Aitor Anabitarte(Fr/Lasarte-Oria, Spain) layup gave the Saints a 12-3 lead with 15:49 left remaining in the first half. The nine-point margin was the largest lead for USF this afternoon as the Ramblers began to take control after the media timeout.
Loyola shot 63%(14-22) from the floor in the first half and, was up 43-30 at halftime. The Saints shot 42%(11-26) from the floor in the first half and 3-5(60%) from the three-point line. The Saints were unable to overcome the 13-point margin as the Ramblers shot an impressive 73%(19-26) from the floor including nailing eight of their 13 shot attempts from beyond the arch. The Rambler’s offensive attack would guide them to the victory.
Guard Eric Ting was the only Saint player in double-figures. Ting netted 16 points(6-13 FG, 4-4 FT) and also finished the game leading the team in assists with three. Lewis Holey(Sr/Sydney, Australia), Deandre Johnson(Sr/Watts, Calif), and Carlos Tovias(Corsicana, TX) contributed with six points apiece. Aitor Anabitarte and E.J Charles(So/Mokena, Il) would both lead the team in rebounding and they grabbed four boards each.
For the game, the Saints shot 41%(21-51) from the floor, 31%(5-16) from beyond the arch, and 80%(8-10) from the free-throw line as 16 players saw the floor in this afternoon’s contest. Their Missouri Valley opponents finished the game shooting 68% (33-48) from the field and 12-19(63%) from beyond the arch. The Ramblers converted on 14 on their 21 free-throw attempts.
Loyola, who gained the national spotlight during their 2018 Cinderella run in the NCAA Tournament, was led by Tom Welch and Baylor Hebb who both tallied a game-leading 17 points. Behind them was center Jacob Hutson who tallied 15 points as five players were in double-digits for the Ramblers.
The win would represent Loyola’s fourth win of the season as they improve to 4-2. As for USF, they will remain 5-2 overall so far this season.
The Saints welcome Mount Vernon Nazarene to the Sullivan Center next Tuesday (Dec. 29) in the second game of the USF New Years Classic. Tip-off for this contest is scheduled for 3 p.m.