Jan. 17, 2011
Jersey City, N.J. - Senior guard Brian Rudolph's floater with 0.5 ticks remaining gave Loyola a 65-63 MAAC road win at Saint Peter's Monday afternoon as the Greyhounds won for the fourth time in five games. Loyola moved to 4-3 in MAAC play and are above .500 in the conference for the first time since January 2009.
After Loyola junior forward Shane Walker converted a pair of free throws with 19.7 seconds left to knot the score at 63, the Peacocks' Nick Leon forced up a shot with eight seconds remaining and Rudolph grabbed the defensive rebound and headed up court. With nothing open at the basket, he tossed up a six-foot floater that hit the iron and dropped through for the game-winning basket with 0.5 seconds left. Saint Peter's inbounded the ball over half court and the horn sounded before a final shot could be attempted.
"When I first got the ball, I looked at the clock right away and saw nine seconds and I thought there might only be two or three and I would need to take a deep three," Rudolph described about the final sequence. "I crossed midcourt and [Greyhounds head coach] Jimmy [Patsos] was yelling that there was plenty of time so I got to the wing. Once I got inside the lane, I saw an opening so I took it and it went in. It was a great team win for us."
After a first half that featured 10 ties and two lead changes, the Peacocks (9-9, 4-3 MAAC) used a seven-point run to lead 31-29 at the intermission. The run ballooned to 16 straight Saint Peter's points to start the second half and the Peacocks led 40-29 with 16:28 remaining.
For the second consecutive game, the Greyhounds (8-9) fought back over the final 16 minutes. Junior guard J'hared Hall knocked down three three-pointers and Walker scored two baskets and four free throws as Loyola took a 48-46 lead on Hall's third three, capping a 19-6 run with 10:13 remaining.
But the Peacocks scored 12 of the next 15 points for a 58-51 advantage with 6:51 to play. Hall would come to the rescue again as he connected on consecutive three-pointers to get Loyola within a single possession at 60-57 with 4:48 left. Sophomore forward Erik Etherly scored four points around a tip-in by the Peacocks' Ryan Bacon to make the score 62-61 with 1:41 remaining.
Following a Saint Peter's turnover, Walker got caught between a layup and a dunk on what would have given the Greyhounds the lead with under a minute to play. Bacon converted the first of a two-shot foul to advance the Peacocks' lead back to two points at 63-61. Walker redeemed himself on the next possession by sinking both free throws around a Saint Peter's timeout to tie the score at 63-all, setting up the final sequence.
Walker finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and four blocks to lead Loyola in all three categories. Hall tallied all 15 of his points on second-half three-pointers and freshman guard Dylon Cormier added 11 points. Saint Peter's was led by Wesley Jenkins' 24 points and eight rebounds and Leon was the only other Peacocks player in double figures with 16.
Following a weekend sweep, Loyola returns to action at home on Thursday night when it hosts Manhattan at 8:00 p.m.