Flames Drop Home Contest Against Valparaiso, 70-46
Feb. 1, 2014
CHICAGO – The UIC men’s basketball team (5-18, 0-9) dropped a home contest against Valparaiso (14-10, 6-3) on Saturday afternoon by a final of 70-46. 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 experienced iron-unkind as they 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 tear 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. Twenty four seconds later, Valpo freshman Alec Peters countered with a three ball of his own, giving the Crusaders a 14-12 advantage and the edge for the remainder 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 of eight as he tacked on eight points. Wiegand is averaging 7.3 boards in his last six games. Junior Ahman Fells was the lone Flame to shoot 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 by a margin of +9 (15-6), as the Flames own a 102-64 surplus against Horizon League opponents this season.
The Flames return to action on Wednesday at first-place Green Bay with tip scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.