UIC Falls to rv/rv Illinois After Leading Majority of the Game, 74-60|
Dec. 28, 2013
CHICAGO (United Center) – The UIC men’s basketball team (5-9) dropped an in-state rivalry game to rv/rv Illinois (11-2), 74-60, after leading the majority of the game on Saturday afternoon at the United Center. Senior Kelsey Barlow paced UIC with 21 points, his fifth 20-plus point effort of the season, adding six assists and five rebounds to his stat line. UIC executed two 9-2 runs in the first half and led by as much as 13 points, taking a 44-34 advantage into the locker room.
“That was by far the best half of basketball we played all year,” said UIC Head Coach Howard Moore. “Unfortunately, our intensity dropped in the second half and Illinois was able to take advantage. This is a great rivalry game. It’s good for the state of Illinois and the city of Chicago and I hope we continue it.”
The Flames rode Barlow in the first half as he netted 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting. Eighteen points serves as UIC’s highest first period scoring output by any player this season. UIC shot 18-of-29 (62.1%) from the field, which stands as the second-best percentage in any half for UIC this season. The Flames also drilled all seven of their threes in first period, the most in any stanza for UIC this year.
UIC never trailed in the first half and held the lead for a total of 24 minutes and 24 seconds during the entirety of today’s contest.
Illinois began the second half on an 8-0 spurt to pull within two just over one minute into the period. The Illini finally jumped in front at the 12:49, their first lead of the game, on a Rayvonte Rice layup and remained in the driver’s seat for the rest of the game. Rice finished the contest with 28 points on 10-of-16 shooting.
The Flames did out-rebound Illinois, 33-32, but held a much wider margin at the break, 19-8. Senior Jordan Harks led all rebounders with nine caroms.
The Flames now begin Horizon League competition and return to action at Valparaiso on Jan. 2.