Fresh from their demotion from the AP Top 25, the Loyola Ramblers returned to Gentile Arena with a vengeance to defeat the Southern Illinois Salukis by a score of 59-47. The team was hungry right out of the gates and did not hesitate to pull ahead. Here are three observations from the win:
Red hot Ramblers
The Rambler offense played another strong game, with multiple players contributing to their success. The team combined for a field goal percentage of 42.2, shooting an even 50 percent in the first half. Williamson led the way with 20 points, with junior Braden Norris and graduate student Aher Uguak each with 13 apiece.
The team was able to perform in many different areas, making key shots from beyond the arc as well as forcing the ball inside for 24 points in the paint.
Setting the tone early
The Ramblers looked much better in the first half, ending it with a convincing lead. Two quick threes by graduate student Lucas Williamson gave the Ramblers an early lead to which they never looked back. The offense fired on all cylinders all throughout the half, creating many high quality opportunities.
The Ramblers were also sharp on defense, holding the Salukis to just 28.6 percent from the field and their lead at halftime sat at a whopping 13 points. While they weren’t as sharp in the second half, they were still able to power through for the win.
With two rebounds in Tuesday night’s contest, Lucas Williamson is just two rebounds away from 500 in his career. Williamson would become just the twenty third player in program history to reach this plateau and the first since former teammate Cameron Krutwig in 2020.
The Ramblers will travel to Southern Illinois for a rematch against the Salukis on Thursday night at 7 pm on NBC Sports Chicago.