Just as the women did one day earlier, the University of Indianapolis men’s basketball team suffered an overtime loss to the Lewis University Flyers on Friday, March 4. The men lost 92-89 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship quarterfinal.
The Greyhounds had a 38-33 lead at the end of the first half, but the Flyers battled back in the second half, during which the teams exchanged the lead four times. The Hounds struggled from the field in the second half, going 9-24 from the field. The Greyhounds went 19-25 from the free-throw line, keeping them in the game. Senior guard Jordan Loyd had a chance at a game-winner at the end of regulation, but his shot was off the mark.
Head Men’s Basketball Coach Stan Gouard said that lapses in defense led to the Greyhounds’ demise in the second half.
“We have to be able to defend, down the stretch especially,” Gouard said. “I thought we did a decent job the first half, but the second half, we got away from our defensive principles and allowed guys who weren’t scoring well the first half to get into a rhythm.”
In overtime, the Flyers’ lead grew to as large as five, and UIndy was unable to regain control of the game. The Hounds were led by Loyd, who had a team-high 20 points to go along with six rebounds and two steals. Senior guard Joe Retic, followed closely, adding 19 points, five assists and five rebounds. Three other Greyhounds scored in double figures: senior forward Tyler Rambo added 15 points and senior guard Lucas Barker and sophomore guard Eric Davidson each added 12 points. Junior center Ernest Maize also had a game-high 10 rebounds.
During selection on Sunday, the Greyhounds earned their sixth straight NCAA tournament berth and will face the No. 10 Ashland University Eagles. The Hounds fell early in the season, in November, to Ashland, 67-75, in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference/GLVC Challenge.
“There were a lot of things that we did badly, to lose that game [in November],” Gouard said. “We’re a better team now, than back in November, so I’m really excited about the game.
During the November match-up, the Hounds with first-half shooting, going 29 percent from field goal range and 14 percent from behind the three-point line. The team also was outrebounded 42-29, while allowing the Eagles to grab 16 offensive boards, leading to 20 second-chance points.
Rambo noted that the team is not doing anything drastically different to prepare for Saturday’s game against the Eagles.
“It’s been the same. There’s just a little more of an edge because we know that every game counts,” Rambo said. “We’ve been more mentally locked in, and it’s been spirited at practice. Everyone wants to win and try and do something that’s never been done here before.”
Gouard expressed similar sentiments about the Hounds’ tournament preparations.
“We don’t want to change very much. We did win 20 ball games this year. But we just want to touch on the things we’ve been doing bad,” Gouard said. “That’s been our focus this week, [to] address some of our issues [that] we’ve had in the past seven or eight games and hopefully move forward and play better. I’m looking forward to a ball game where everyone is clicking on all cylinders. If we do that, we’re a dangerous ball club.”
The Greyhounds will take on Ashland at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside on Saturday, March 12. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m.