Men's Basketball Earns Second NCAA Bid With 76-75 Overtime Victory Over Loyola

Horizon League Tournament MVP Cedrick Banks puts up the game-winning shot over Loyola Chicago guard Kevin Clancy.
Horizon League Tournament MVP Cedrick Banks puts up the game-winning shot over Loyola Chicago guard Kevin Clancy.
March 5, 2002

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Cedric Banks' basket with 4 seconds to play in OT propels the Flames to the Horizon Championship.

Cleveland, Ohio - University of Illinois at Chicago sophomore Cedrick Banks' turnaround 12-foot baseline jumper with five seconds left in overtime, clinched the 76-75 overtime victory over Loyola for the Horizon League Championship at the Cleveland State Convocation Center on Tuesday night.

UIC will advance to the NCAA Tournament field of 65 for the second time in the past five years. The pairings will be announced on Sunday afternoon on CBS at 5:30 PM.

"It felt good coming off my fingertips," Banks said. "I felt confident and I made it."

Banks, who was named the Horizon League Tournament MVP following the game, led UIC with 17 points (6-for-10). Senior guard Jon-Pierre Mitchom proved to be deadly off the bench as the Missouri native was four-of-six from three point range to finish with 12 points.

"I think this was the game that Chicago wanted to see," UIC head coach Jimmy Collins said. "We played a very hard fought game.

"Loyola is a very well coached team with very talented players."

Loyola junior point guard David Bailey did everything he could to help the Ramblers to victory as he scored a game-high 35 points (12-for-21). Loyola forward Ryan Blankson was dangerous on the boards as he recorded a double-double of 15 points and tied a championship record with 16 rebounds.

Bailey, however, nearly cost the Ramblers the game as little brother Martell stole a pass from David and converted a lay-up with 13.1 seconds left in overtime.

The elder Bailey, however, redeemed himself as Banks fouled him as Loyola was trying to inbound the ball, following Martell's lay-up and the clock remaining at 13.1.

David Bailey calmly drained both free throws to put the Ramblers up 75-74 with 13.1 seconds.

UIC head coach Jimmy Collins called a time-out and the Flames struggled to find a shot, when Banks got free and buried his game-winning jumper.

UIC seemed to have the game in hand in regulation as the Flames held a 59-52 lead with 4:31 remaining. Loyola, however, countered with a 12-2 run capped off with a pair of free throws by Bailey to give the Ramblers a 62-61 lead with 1:11 remaining in the contest.

Mitchom countered on the ensuing possession and calmly drained a three-pointer with 40 seconds left to push the Flames ahead at 64-62. Mitchom, however, fouled Loyola's Corey Minnifield (4 points, 7 rebounds) with 31 seconds left in regulation and sent him to the line for the double-bonus.

Minnifield drained both of his charity tosses to knot the game at 64 apiece and send the contest into overtime.

Following the game, senior shooting guard Jordan Kardos (9 points) was named to the All-Horizon League Tournament team.