The Loyola men’s basketball team (7-5) completed its final non-conference homestand with a resounding 75-47 victory over Division III opponent Benedictine University at Gentile Arena Tuesday night.
The Ramblers again found offensive consistency as they shot 61.7 percent from the field and recorded 21 assists on 29 made shots. Sophomore center Cameron Krutwig led Loyola in scoring for the sixth time this season, recording 18 points on 8-for-10 shooting and also pulling down three rebounds.
First-year center Franklin Agunanne recorded a career-high 10 points while grabbing seven rebounds in his best showing of the season so far. Redshirt senior guard Marques Townes also propelled the Ramblers with nine points and seven assists.
“Franklin’s got a nice touch,” head coach Porter Moser said after the game. “The kid loves to play. He’s really enthusiastic [but] he’s gotta slow down. He gathered himself in the first half, slowed down and dunked it, but then he had a couple travels because he was so [excited].”
Benedictine, a D-III school located in western suburb Lisle, finished second out of 11 teams in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference last season with a 17-10 record. With the loss, the Eagles fell to 4-5 on the year.
The first half saw the Ramblers take control of the game as they shot 66.7 percent from the field and headed to the locker room with a 40-26 advantage after finishing on a 13-2 run. The second half was more of the same as the Ramblers outscored the Eagles 35-21 in the final 20 minutes and completed the victory 75-47.
“[Against] Maryland, we only had [five] assists,” Townes said. “We just tried to emphasize sharing the ball, getting back to the way we usually play and that’s by sharing the ball and not caring who scores.”
Moser said the team can “take confidence” from the two victories at Gentile over Benedictine and Norfolk State University as it looks to close out the non-conference portion of its schedule Dec. 22.
“I think the guys are seeing [what happens when they’re] sharing the ball,” Moser said. “Any time you can throw a win in the win column after coming back from back-to-back losses, it’s a positive.”
The Ramblers are scheduled to head to Philadelphia Dec. 22 to take on St. Joseph’s University at The Palestra. Tip-off is scheduled for 4 p.m. CDT.
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