Jan. 5, 2005
Baltimore, Md. - Junior Josko Alujevic tipped in Linton Hinds' miss with six seconds remaining in regulation to give Loyola a 70-69 win over Virginia Military Institute on Wednesday night at Reitz Arena. Alujevic scored in a career-high 12 points, but none bigger than the clincher in Loyola's second win of the season.
"The play was for Linton [Hinds] to score," says Alujevic. "But coach told me to go to the basket in case he missed. I did that and was at the right place at the right time."
If Alujevic's basket won the game, freshman Brad Farrell's performance made it all possible. The 6-4 guard from Herndon, Va. poured in a career-high 21 points, had four blocked shots and three steals to give the Greyhounds a chance.
After scoring only three points in the first stanza, Farrell took control in the second half and seemed to score at will on the VMI defense. Scoring most of his points in the paint, he helped Loyola shoot a season-best 54 percent from the field for the game and 62 percent from the floor in the second half.
"Coach [Jimmy] Patsos told me that I was playing good, not great," says Farrell. "He encouraged me to take it strong to the basket, keep shooting and good things will happen. I still struggled with my shooting, but I can make lay-ups again."
Farrell and the `Hounds were tied at halftime after building a 13-1 lead to start the game. VMI scored a pair of quick baskets to start the second half, but Loyola remained poised and with Shane James' three-point field goal at 17:11, the `Hounds were back on top, 39-38.
A back-and-forth second period that saw five ties and seven lead changes was knotted up at 66-66 with 2:30 left in regulation. Farrell put Loyola on top with his drive to the hoop, but the Keydets answered with a three-pointer from Fred Robinson with 22 seconds on the clock.
With another loss staring the Greyhounds in the face, Head Coach Jimmy Patsos called timeout to set up the game-winning play in prophetic fashion.
"In the huddle I told our guys to crash the boards," says Patsos. "The last thing I said was that sometimes you win these games with a tip-in."
Alujevic's tip was also his career-best sixth rebound and left him 5-for-6 from the field. Freshman Freddie Stanback, who was 3-for-6 from three-point range, added 12 points while pulling down a team-best eight rebounds.
The Greyhounds have now won two of their last three home games and are 2-9 on the season heading into conference play. Loyola, which is 1-1 in the MAAC this year, hosts Rider at Reitz Arena this Saturday at 2 p.m.
"This was a big win for our confidence," says Patsos. "We're 1-1 in the MAAC and coming off a win heading in the conference schedule. Hopefully we can build on this."