The UIC Flames and the Loyola Ramblers meet Tuesday in college basketball action from Gentile Arena. UIC enters this one at 1-1 on the year. The Flames beat Little Rock by 15 points in their last outing. As for Loyola, they’re currently 1-1 as well and coming off a win over Eastern Illinois. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
The Flames opened up the year with a tough matchup versus Cincinnati. After falling behind by 10 points in the first half, UIC ended up losing that one 69-58. The Flames shot reasonably well from the floor (43.3 percent) but hit just two of their 16 3-point tries. Toby Okani doubled up in the defeat with 20 points and 11 boards.
In game two versus Little Rock, UIC had a much easier time on the scoreboard. The Flames jumped out to a 38-25 lead by the break and cruised from there on 48 more points in an 86-71 win. Leading the way was Isaiah Rivera with 25 points. Okani doubled up once again as well with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Over on the Loyola side, they had a tough matchup in their opener as well, taking on No. 10 Florida Atlantic. The Ramblers took a 13-point deficit into the second half and didn’t get closer in a 75-62 loss. Loyola had 18 turnovers in the defeat, but stayed competitive on the boards with a 33-31 rebounding deficit.
The Ramblers got their first win on Saturday versus Eastern Illinois. Loyola had a nice scoring run in the first half with 48 points and ended up with an 89-65 blowout victory. Tops on the team was Desmond Watson’s 24 points. Greg Dolan added 12 points, and Patrick Mwamba had 11 points in 16 minutes.
ANDREW’S FREE PICK
I’m going to take a stab on UIC here. You could argue this one either way, however; it should be a pretty fun matchup. The Flames posted another solid shooting effort in their last matchup versus Little Rock, hitting 48.3 percent from the field and a much-improved 47.6 percent (10-of-21) from 3-point range. The foul shooting was a little sketchy at 71.4 percent (20-of-28) however, and the team coughed up 14 turnovers. Still, it was a nice effort to get back to .500 on the year. Loyola is in much the same boat after the loss to FAU in the opener and the game two win over Eastern Illinois. This game is likely going to come down to outside shooting and second-chance points late, and I think the Flames can eke out a cover if all goes well.