Men’s basketball falls to Valparaiso

Men's Bball vs. Valpo

Jordan Harks takes a shot Saturday against Valparaiso. Photo: Timothy Nguyen/UIC News

The men’s basketball team (5-18, 0-9 Horizon League) dropped a home contest against Valparaiso (14-10, 6-3 Horizon League) Saturday, 70-46.

The Flames return to action at 7 p.m. today at first-place Green Bay.

The Flames struggled to contain Valpo senior LaVonte Dority, who poured in a career-high 33 points, including 5-of-6 from behind the arc.

UIC shot 26.8 percent from the floor and 23.1 percent from the outside.

Dority put up 22 of his 33 in the first half and drained a three just before the halftime buzzer sounded to give Valpo a 36-23 lead at the break. He continued his strong play in the second half, hitting 3-of-4 from deep.

The Flames held a one-point lead at the 10:54 mark of the first half after freshman Markese McGuire buried one of just three UIC treys on the day. Less than a minute later, Valpo freshman Alec Peters countered with a three pointer of his own, giving the Crusaders a 14-12 advantage and the edge for the rest of the contest.

The Crusaders outscored UIC, 12-1, in the final three minutes of the first half and carried that momentum into the final stanza. The Flames showed a spark midway through the second half with a 5-0 run, cutting Valpo’s lead to 53-41 with 7:59 left to play. The spurt was short-lived, however, as the Crusaders held UIC to just five more points for the rest of the game.

Sophomore Jake Wiegand continued his impressive performance on the boards with a game-high eight rebounds in addition to eight points. Wiegand is averaging 7.3 boards in his last six games.

Junior Ahman Fells shot above 50 percent, hitting 3-of-4 from the field for six points. Senior Kelsey Barlow and junior Marc Brown chipped in eight points apiece as Barlow dished out a game-high five assists.

UIC out-rebounded Valpo on the offensive glass, 15-6.

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