Texas Pan American (1-1) at Loyola-Chicago (2-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, November 14th, 6:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Gentile Center (5,200) -- Chicago, Illinois. Television: None. Home Record: UTPA 0-0, Loyola-Chicago 2-0. Away Record: UTPA 0-0, Loyola-Chicago 0-0. Neutral Record: UTPA 1-1, Loyola-Chicago 0-0. Conference Record: UTPA 0-0, Loyola-Chicago 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: Looking to remain perfect in the early stages of this season, the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers with close out the Nick Kladis Classic this evening when they battle the Texas-Pan American Broncs for the first-time ever.
The Broncs claimed their first victory of the season on Saturday when they clobbered Eastern Kentucky, 67-53. It was a great improvement over the team's efforts in the opener, as UTPA started the new season with a 69-46 loss to Indiana State.
The Ramblers have opened the season with a 2-0 start for the first time since the 2007-08 campaign, when they outlasted Indiana State, 86-74, on Saturday. It was a slightly tougher matchup for Loyola, which began the season with a 73-57 victory over Eastern Kentucky.
The Broncs were able to bounce back from a dreadful offensive performance in their opener, by defeating Eastern Kentucky by 14 points. UTPA, which shot a woeful 24.5 percent against Indiana State on Friday, posted a more respectable 39.6 percent effort in the win over EKU. There is still plenty of room for improvement, but the team was able to use a 20-of-30 clip from the foul line to its advantage. Aaron Urbanus, who tallied nine points in the opener, exploded in the win, scoring 21 points on 6-of-11 shooting. Jared Maree added 11 points and eight rebounds, while Perry Petty finished with 10 points, five boards and four assists. Perry was the lone player in double-figures for UTPA in the opener, and will be looked upon as the team's main scoring threat throughout the season.
The Ramblers put forth back-to-back sensational efforts at the offensive end of the floor. Through two games Loyola is shooting 48.6 percent from the field and that includes an even better 48.8 percent from behind the arc (20-of-41). Jordan Hicks, who scored 10 points in the opener, led the way in the win over Indiana State with a 19-point effort on Saturday. However, the best player on this roster through the first two contests has been Terrance Hill. The guard opened the year scoring a team-high 21 points off the bench, but on Saturday he found himself in the starting lineup and the added pressure did not phase him, as he finished with 17 points and seven rebounds. Geoff McCammon added 15 points in a reserve role, while Ben Averkamp and Walt Gibler tallied 13 and 10 points, respectively. Gibler, who has 27 points through two games, is a key to Loyola's success this year, and should continue to shine in the starting lineup.
The Broncs should feel good about their performance on Saturday, but they should hold on to that memory for a little while, because it is unlikely they will have a chance to post another win this evening.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Loyola-Chicago 78, UT-Pan American 51
11/14 10:32:32 ET
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