The Loyola Ramblers are hoping that it will be another March to remember as they officially punched their ticket into the 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament by winning the Missouri Valley Conference championship game over Drake on Sunday afternoon.
The win is Loyola’s 17th in their last 18 games, and they avenged their only defeat in that stretch by taking down the Bulldogs, who beat them in an overtime contest on Valentine’s Day.
Cameron Krutwig and Braden Norris both scored 20 points to pace the Loyola defensive effort in the game to help the Ramblers finish the regular season with a 24-4 record.
Keith Clemons chipped in with 13 points, and Aher Uguak had a solid all-around game, with six points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals in the victory.
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Fans will undoubtedly recall what happened the last time Porter Moser’s Ramblers reached the NCAA Tournament, as the 11th-seeded squad romped to a Final Four appearance during the 2018 edition of March Madness.
This year, the only question that remains is where the 20th-ranked Ramblers will be seeded. Armed with arguably the best defense in the nation, Loyola will surely be a team on plenty of radars as the tournament begins in Indianapolis, and all eyes will be glued to TV sets on Selection Sunday as the tournament bracket is revealed next week.