Men’s basketball ready to face rival Demons at home
Cheer on the Flames tonight in a crosstown clash against the DePaul Blue Demons at 7 p.m. at the UIC Pavilion.
Students are free with i-card and employees can receive discounted tickets using the code “Staff15” on Ticketmaster.com
Three UIC players scored in double figures for their second consecutive game Saturday, but the Flames could not overcome Drake’s high-powered offensive attack as the Bulldogs posted an 83-62 victory at the Knapp Center.
The Bulldogs shot 52.5 percent from the field, sinking 10 of 19 three-point attempts. UIC was slowed by a season-high 20 turnovers, which led to 21 points for Drake.
UIC scored the game’s first two baskets with the second coming when Jake Wiegand knifed inside and scored on a pretty feed from Dikembe Dixson. Drake went on a 10-2 run, however, to grab a four-point lead with 15:55 to go in the period.
Drake surged ahead 13-8 before a five-point run featuring a triple from Lance Whitaker. A baseline drive and basket by Najeal Young evened the ledger with 12:05 to go in the stanza. The Bulldogs continued to connect and built an eight-point lead, but six points from Dixson and a three-pointer by Markese McGuire evened the score at 23 points with 5:21 to go in the first half. Dixson chipped in with eight points in the first 20 minutes and a team-high three rebounds.
The teams traded baskets with UIC’s Whitaker drilling his second three-pointer of the half with 35.4 seconds to go to trim a seven-point deficit to four points. The Flames turned to a zone defense out of a timeout to prevent a good look, but the Bulldogs were able to get to the line and sink two free throws to take a 36-30 lead at the half.
Whitaker scored a season-high 10 points in the first half, going a perfect 4-for-4 from the field with the two efforts from distance. Dixson added eight points in the final eight minutes of the half, plus a team-high three rebounds.
The Flames made only one of their first seven shots to begin the second half, which helped Drake go on a 10-2 run over the first 4:09 of the frame. Tai Odiase made UIC’s lone basket during the stretch.
UIC fell behind by 18 points with 14:37 to go in the game, but a 7-0 run featuring points from Dominique Matthews, Young and Drew Hackett chopped it to 11 with 12:51 remaining. The Flames fell behind by 15 points again, but the squad collected a few more defensive stops and trimmed the deficit to single digits (nine) after Wiegand drained two free throws with 7:51 left. Drake scored five unanswered points to pull ahead 83-62.
The Flames shot the ball better in the second half, but the Bulldogs continued to convert at a clip above 50 percent.
Dixson paced the UIC offense with 13 points and led the way on the glass with six rebounds. Wiegand finished with 11 points, and Whitaker had 10 points, four boards and a steal.
Hackett contributed seven points, three rebounds and a team-high two steals in 22 minutes off the bench.