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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2023 9:01 pm 
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Location: Chicago, Illinois
Friday, February 17, 2023 6:00 p.m.
Gentile Arena, Chicago, Ill.


The Ramblers return home to a sold-out Gentile Arena for a Friday night matchup with the Dayton Flyers. Dayton was the league favorite in the preseason, and after enduring some injuries in the middle of the season have surged back to second place in the A-10. The Flyers and Ramblers went to overtime in Dayton on Jan. 31, with the Flyers coming out on top 85-81.

Loyola returns home after a successful two-game road trip where they pushed Richmond to the limit before losing 74-71, and then held on to a big lead in a UMass comeback surge. The Ramblers went up by 18 with less than 10 minutes left before turnovers, one and done possessions, and UMass shooting brought the Minutemen to within two. A missed tip for a tie at the buzzer gave Loyola their first A-10 conference road win, 64-62.

Dayton has had a week off, after beating VCU on the road and Saint Louis at home in their last two games and rising to second place in the process. Since guards Kobe Elvis and Malichi Smith have returned from injury, Dayton has looked much more like the Dayton they were expected to be. Junior forward Toumani Camara has been especially effective, averaging 21.8 ppg AND 12.8 rebounds over the past four games.

Coach Anthony Grant will likely be starting A-10 preseason player of the year, 6'10" sophomore forward DaRon Holmes II (17.5 ppg, 7.9 rpg); 6’8” junior forward from Belgium, Toumani Camara (14.0 ppg, 9.3 rpg); 6’6” sophomore forward RJ Blakney (7.1 ppg); 6’2” sophomore guard Kobe Elvis (8.9 ppg); and 6’0” sophomore point guard Malachi Smith (8.2 ppg, 5.5 apg). Mustapha Amzil (9.6 ppg), Koby Brea (41.1% from three), and Mike Sharavjamts (5.8 ppg, 2.9 assists from a 6’8” forward) are some terrific players coming off the bench.

Loyola’s overtime game at Dayton was about the best the Ramblers have played in a losing effort: three players in double figures, 21 points off the bench, 52% shooting on threes and 49% overall, “only” 14 turnovers in an OT game. Were it not for a 31-12 difference in free throw attempts and 31 points from Camara, Loyola might have had their best win of the year. Can a home court rematch with some tweaking to the game plan put the Ramblers over the top?

Dayton is 3-3 on the road in league play, while the Ramblers are 2-4 at home in A-10 play.


Loyola game notes: https://loyolaramblers.com/documents/20 ... ayton2.pdf

Dayton game notes: https://daytonflyers.com/news/2023/2/15 ... riday.aspx

TV/Streaming video: ESPN2 https://www.espn.com/

Radio/Streaming audio: https://loyolaramblers.com/watch/?Live=144&type=Live

Live stats: https://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=426269

Vegas odds: Dayton by 7


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2023 11:04 pm 
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Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Looking forward to this one! Hope we can keep it competitive. Should be a great atmosphere.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 9:04 am 
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Joined: Mon May 06, 2013 12:39 pm
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Reposting from the tickets thread:

Anyone need 2 tix for today's game vs Dayton? Looking to sell my pair as a friend has an extra for me. I'd let them go at face value to a Loyola fan on here. Would rather not have to put them up on the third market and have a UD fan snatch them up. If I can't find a buyer here, I'll just eat the cost instead of letting more blue and red in Gentile.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 12:48 pm 
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YOU can give them to the Athletics Department/ Ticket office/Brain Day.. and they will make sure they get to LU fans....


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 7:54 pm 
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I have some things to say. But they all involve curse words. So out of respect, I'll sleep it off and come back with my thoughts.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 9:12 pm 
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Among this team's many deficiencies, they are too short.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 9:17 pm 
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Not much to say about this game, I guess.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 10:53 pm 
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I like that the team plays hard and reps the University well. They're a likable bunch of kids. As I watched the game, I asked myself which Rambler player would start for Dayton? Conclusion: there's a talent gap. We have a coach who can recruit (proved it under Porter Moser in the Valley and will adjust to A10), he has a world-class city, a beautiful campus, a great atmosphere, and a good conference all to sell. I watched a few minutes of Drake vs Northern Iowa this week. There is a clear talent gap between the Valley and the A10. Every A10 team seems to have at least two guys who can light you up on any given night and the majority have three or four. There's more length at every position in the A10 and there's a lot more teams to cut through. Only a couple Valley teams can make the claim that they have 2, maybe 3, guys who can crush you (Drake, Bradley?). I'm confident the Ramblers will adjust, and start recruiting more A10-level players leading to being competitive in this league.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 11:03 pm 
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Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Don’t really know what else there is to say anymore. This has been a beyond difficult season to watch, and unless something miraculous happens in the tournament, just have a few more games left before it’s over. Trying to just think of some positives/ways next year can be better:

1. The atmosphere today was great. Despite the miserable season this has been, fans continue to show up and show out. Student section is slowing a little, but still mostly full. Once both Dayton and Loyola are good, games in Gentile will be electric between the two fanbases. It takes a special place and special culture to have a crowd like that with a 9-16 team, and we have it.

2. For next season, we absolutely need an influx of size and shooting from the portal. We were woefully undersized against their front court and really against most positions, and struggled to rebound as a result. With that, you’d hope for some knockdown shooting to make up for a lack of size, but outside of Braden (who was wayyy off today), that’s just not the case. The combo of those two things is what makes our offense so hard to watch, IMO.

3. That being said, I think the blueprint for a bounce back season next year (i.e. around .500 or better) is relatively clear. Depending on graduations/transfers, if we can grab a seasoned big in the portal, along with a shooter or two at the guard/wing spots, we could already be much improved. Combined with second year improvements (whether as freshman or second-year in the system) of Schwieger, Quinn, Dawson, Lewis, Edwards, Alston, and Rubin being as early-impact as advertised, we could potentially be in the top half of the conference. The athleticism and potential is there, we just need some reinforcements and experience to fulfill it.

Al this said, this could all be wishful thinking from a fan who is desperate for improvement and trying to cope for this tough season, but I really believe in Coach Drew and company to figure this out. We’ve come too far as a program in the last 5 years for that not to be the case.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2023 11:16 pm 
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Location: Livin in the middle, between the two extremes
The rumor going around was that there were 8 or 9 nba scouts in attendance. And they weren’t there for any of our guys. Dayton’s roster is what Drew wants to get to, and clearly doesn’t have yet.

Edwards getting some time in the second half was a welcome change, and he showed pretty well. He has the size and talent, but whatever has been keeping him on the bench is a mystery. It must be not connecting with the offense or defense, because the raw size and talent is there. Between the unrealized expectations of him and Saint Thomas, and Dawson’s injury (who was really showing some good things), those are 3 of the “A10 type” size and athletic combo guys that we thought we’d have and have been missing. Wilson is another, but he’s only started to play a role recently. That’s 4 missing expected pieces in a 10 or 11 man rotation. Not a small thing. That gap isn’t closing anytime this season…always possible it could next season…but in the meantime if we’re not shooting well we’re not winning games against the Daytons and VCU’s.


Last edited by 01grad on Fri Feb 17, 2023 11:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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