Recap: Evansville vs. Loyola-Chicago
Evansville, IN (SportsNetwork.com) - D.J. Balentine netted 18 points to lift the Evansville Purple Aces to a 52-48 decision over the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers in a Missouri Valley Conference battle at the Ford Center.
Blake Simmons chipped in 11 points and eight rebounds for Evansville (9-10, 2-4 MVC) while Duane Gibson tallied 10 points, five boards and five assists. The win was the Purple Aces' second in three games.
Christian Thomas paced the Ramblers (7-11, 2-4) with 19 points and eight rebounds. Milton Doyle contributed 10 points and six rebounds, but also committed four of Loyola's 17 turnovers.
Both sides made eight shots from the floor and six free-throw attempts in the opening period. Loyola held a 19-10 lead with 5:30 left in the first half, but the Purple Aces rallied back and Balentine put in a layup just before the buzzer to send the game into the break tied up at 23.
The Ramblers connected on 45.5 percent of their field goal attempts including 2-of-5 from beyond the arc over the final 20 minutes of the contest. Evansville managed to outscore the visitors, 9-3, at the charity stripe in the second stanza. Balentine knocked down a jumper with 1:21 remaining in regulation to break a 48-48 tie and the hosts were able to stay in front the rest of the way.
Evansville enjoyed a 34-30 edge in the rebounding battle which helped it outscore Loyola, 11-5, in second chance points.Game Notes