The Loyola men’s basketball team (17-12, 10-6) fell to Southern Illinois University 63-53 in nail-biting fashion Sunday afternoon in Carbondale. The loss drops the Ramblers back into a three-way tie for first place with Drake University and Missouri State University in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) standings.
In the loss, the Ramblers were led by sophomore center Cameron Krutwig, who finished with 17 points and snagged four rebounds. Redshirt senior guard Clayton Custer also added 17 points on 7-for-14 shooting.
The first half saw the Ramblers jump out to an 8-2 advantage in the game’s first three minutes. Loyola finished the half shooting at a 52.2 percent clip from the field as Krutwig and Custer combined for 17 of the Ramblers’ 30 first half points.
The Ramblers headed for the locker room with a 30-29 advantage as redshirt sophomore Aher Uguak saw his late jumper hit the bottom of the net as time expired.
The second half saw Loyola struggle to take control as they shot 40 percent from the field while only making 10 field goals. The Ramblers were overwhelmed by a late run by SIU eventually fell 63-53.
The Ramblers’ season is scheduled to continue Feb. 27 as they take on University of Northern Iowa at the McLeod Center in Cedar Falls, Iowa at 7 p.m. on ESPN3.