Loyola pulls away to down NIU

Northern Illinois guard Travon Baker (5) nearly loses the ball under the Huskies' basket during the first half of a game against Loyola in DeKalb, Ill., Saturday, Nov. 24, 2012. Loyola defeated NIU, 53-46.
Northern Illinois guard Travon Baker (5) nearly loses the ball under the Huskies' basket during the first half of a game against Loyola in DeKalb, Ill., Saturday, Nov. 24, 2012. Loyola defeated NIU, 53-46.

DEKALB – Ben Averkamp scored 15 points, including three 3-pointers, and Loyola pulled away in the second half for a 53-46 victory over Northern Illinois on Saturday.

Averkamp added 10 rebounds, as did Joe Crisman, for the Ramblers (4-2), and Cully Payne scored 10 points.

Akeem Springs led the Huskies (1-3) with 15 points but was just 6 of 16 from the field, part of a 30 percent overall effort for NIU.

After a tepid first half in which the teams combined for 11 field goals, Loyola came alive, shooting 56 percent from the floor after halftime. An 18-4 run, capped by a Jeff White layup with 7:19 to play, turned a tie game into a 43-29 Ramblers lead. Payne and White made five free throws in the final minute to seal the victory.

The victory moved Loyola ahead of NIU 17-16 in the all-time series, which dates to 1926.

Bradley 80, UT-Martin 57: At Peoria, Walt Lemon Jr. scored 15 points and Bradley breezed to a victory over Tennessee-Martin on Saturday.

Jake Eastman added 14 points for the Braves (4-1). Will Egolf had 13 points and a team-high nine rebounds, Jalen Crawford scored 12 and Dyricus Simms-Edwards finished with 11 points.

Illinois-Chicago 56, Southeast Missouri State 45: At Chicago, Josh Crittle scored 17 points and had 12 rebounds for Illinois-Chicago which survived a horrid shooting performance to get by Southeast Missouri State.

The Flames (4-1) shot 28.8 percent from the field, or 19 of 66, but hit six 3-pointers and were 12 of 18 from the free-throw line while turning the ball over only five times. UIC out-rebounded the Redhawks 50-40.

Nebraska-Omaha 68, Chicago State 66: At Valparaiso, Ind., Justin Simmons’ 3-pointer with 1:15 to play Saturday capped a 17-point effort and gave Nebraska-Omaha the lead for good in a win over Chicago State in the Joe Cipriano Nebraska Classic.

Saint Louis 61, Southern Illinois 51: At St. Louis, Dwayne Evans scored 14 points and Rob Low added 12 as Saint Louis defeated Southern Illinois.

Cody Ellis and Mike McCall Jr. had nine points each for the Billikens (3-2), who shot 51.2 percent (22 of 43) from the floor.

Savannah State 39, Western Illinois 38: At Savannah, Ga., Rashad Hassan and Preston Blackman scored 13 points apiece as Savannah State held off Western Illinois in nonconference action.

Texas-Pan American 77, SIU Edwardsville 66: At Edinburg, Texas, Aaron Urbanus scored 15 points to lead Texas-Pan American to a 77-66 victory over Southern Illinois-Edwardsville in the home opener at the UTPA Fieldhouse.

Wisconsin 77, Arkansas 70: At Las Vegas, overcoming an 11-point halftime deficit, Sam Dekker fueled the Badgers and scored 19 points to lead Wisconsin past Arkansas in the third-place game of the Las Vegas Invitational.

In addition to Dekker’s play, Ryan Evans had 12 points and seven rebounds for Wisconsin (4-2). Jared Berggren added 10 points, nine rebounds and five blocks and Wisconsin outscored the Razorbacks 48-30 in the second half.

Notre Dame 69, St. Francis (Pa.) 52: At South Bend, Ind., With sixth-year senior Scott Martin out of the lineup Saturday with a bad knee, Notre Dame turned to its big men inside.

Jack Cooley and Garrick Sherman responded. Cooley had 13 points and 13 rebounds, and Sherman added 11 points and seven boards in his first start at Notre Dame to help the Irish beat St. Francis of Pennsylvania.

Minnesota 66, Stanford 63: At Paradise Island, Bahamas, Andre Hollins stood outside the Minnesota locker room, playing with the strings on his backpack and smiling one of those once-in-a-lifetime smiles.

A day after he scored 41 points, Hollins made three free throws with 0.4 seconds to play to give the Golden Gophers a victory over Stanford on Saturday in the fifth-place game of the Battle 4 Atlantis.

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