Coming back from an Iowa Conference loss at Nebraska Wesleyan (92-108) on Feb. 7, the men’s basketball team bounced back and took down the Buena Vista University Beavers in an IIAC conference match back home at Lillis Court this past Saturday, Feb. 10. The Duhawks got out to a quick lead in the first half and held it for a 104-94 victory.
“We shot the heck out of the ball the first half, which makes me automatically look smarter, just shooting well,” said head coach Chris Martin.
This marks the 10th home victory for the Duhawks this season. This last win raised their overall record to 17-6, and they are 10-4 in conference play.
Loras was led by junior guard Josh Ruggles with 19 points. Ruggles was closely followed by first-year forward Cole Navigato with 17 points, including two dunks. Navigato also tallied two steals and three assists.
“(At) the Nebraska Wesleyan game, we just weren’t who we were, and I felt tonight we executed who we are,” said Martin. “I was proud of our guys just executing what we were trying to get done. We didn’t do everything perfectly by any means. We messed up quite a bit. However, I think overall we did what we were trying to do.”
The Duhawks performed well from the perimeter. This includes junior guard Demond George going 4-to-5, and first-year guard Rowan McGowen adding 5-for-8. Together, George and McGowen totaled 31 points, 27 of them from the field. The team as a whole shot 50 percent from the three-point range, and roughly 50 percent from the field. The Duhawks also shot 74 percent from the free-throw line.
Next up, the Duhawks take on Simpson College for an IIAC conference matchup for the No. 2 seed in the conference. The Simpson Storm overturned the Duhawks earlier this season in Indianola, IA, on Simpson’s home court with a 97-87 final score. However, the Duhawks now have the home court advantage.
“(Simpson v. Loras) will be a high level game. They got us at their place, and we didn’t play very well. And it will be a ‘purple reign’ game because it’s the last home game of the year, so we better get every student out there in the bleachers wearing purple” said Coach Martin.
The men’s basketball team played Simpson Wednesday (The Lorian goes to press Tuesday nights) at Lillis Court, a game that could determine whether Loras can gain the No. 2 seed in the Iowa Conference Tournament. For more information, visit the Loras College Athletics page.
Due to technological difficulties, articles from the Feb. 15 issue were posted late. The Lorian apologizes for the late update.