The Loyola men’s basketball team (9-2) defeated the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Saturday 72-56. The Ramblers got their seventh straight win in Gentile Arena after their most efficient offensive performance of the season so far.
Led by senior guard Milton Doyle and Junior forward Aundre Jackson, Loyola shot an eye-popping 68 percent from the field. Doyle and Jackson combined for 43 points, going 18-19 on shots between the two. Jackson, who is now shooting nearly 78 percent from the field on the season, said there isn’t a secret to his offensive success.
“We just look to get the smartest shots possible,” said Jackson. “We emphasize getting it in the paint because that’s where [we’re] … shooting the best. When someone is on we just keep going with it … we’re not selfish.”
Head coach Porter Moser, who was an assistant coach at UWM in 1995, said the reason the team was able to be so efficient on offense was because of the efficiency on defense.
“Our second half defense was really good,” said Moser. “We couldn’t get any stops in the first half and we couldn’t run.”
Jackson has only missed two shots in the last three games. His field goal percentage is in the top 10 in the country, and is a leading reason the Ramblers are tied with Wichita State University for the top spot in the Missouri Valley Conference standings. Moser said that the team will take a break from preparing for their next game – against the University of Illinois-Chicago on Dec. 17 – to focus on academics, another area Loyola is efficient, with a 99 percent graduation rate among its student-athletes.
“I told [the team] the next win they have to get … is [final exams],” Moser said. “That’s what I want their focus on … a win against finals, and then we’ll start focusing on UIC.”