Feb. 5, 2012
JERSEY CITY, N.J. - Loyola University Maryland built a 16-point lead and then fended off a Saint Peter's College charge, holding its sixth-straight opponent to 57 points or fewer, defeating the Peacocks, 66-55, in the Yanitelli Center on Sunday afternoon in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference action.
The stretch of six-straight foes under 60 is the longest in school Division I history (since 1981-1982) and is the longest since January-February 1977 when the Greyhounds went 3-3 over in six games while holding teams to 59 or less.
Loyola improved its record to 18-5 overall, 11-2 in MAAC play. The 18 victories are tied for second-most in school Division I history.
Robert Olson made 4-of-4 3-pointers in the first half and 5-of-6 in the game to lead Loyola with 19 points. Erik Etherly added 15 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots, while Shane Walker scored 14 and added five steals.
"Saint Peter's is always a tough place to play, and they made their run in the second half that we thought they would," Head Coach Jimmy Patsos said. "Shane, Bobby and Erik made plays, though, and we did a better job defensively after they cut it to five."
Saint Peter's (5-19, 4-9) tied the game at six less than four minutes in, and Jordan Latham pulled down two offensive rebounds and was fouled on his second shot attempt. He made both free throws and gave Loyola a lead it would ultimately hold for the rest of the game.
An Anthony Winbush steal, one of his four in just led to a Walker dunk, and then Olson started hitting threes.
He knocked down his first two, off Dylon Cormier and R.J. Williams assists, just over 2:30 apart, and Walker then found him about nine minutes later to extend the Greyhounds' advantage to 29-18 with 4:09 on the clock.
Olson's fourth from long-range of the half put the Greyhounds up 32-18 1:27 later.
Saint Peter's pulled back within single-digits, 32-23, on a Yvon Raymond layup just before halftime, but Loyola quickly extended its lead to 42-27 on back-to-back threes by J'hared Hall and Walker less than four minutes into the half.
Justin Drummond gave the Greyhounds their largest lead, 46-30, with just over 14 minutes left in regulation.
Loyola's lead was 15 after a Cormier three with 11:49 to go, but Saint Peter's used a 9-0 run to get within six on a Raymond jumper with 8:17 on the clock. Walker pushed it back to eight for Loyola on the Greyhounds' next possession, but Lamin Fulton hit a three from the left side, making it a 51-46 Loyola lead with 6:15 remaining.
Twenty-three ticks of the clock later, Walker found Etherly in the lane, and the junior forward used a strong post move to get the ball to the glass. His shot went in, and he made a free-throw after he was fouled. Etherly then knocked down another jumper in the paint after a Winbush steal, and Loyola's lead was 10.
Saint Peter's cut it back to seven on free throws by Raymond and Darius Conley, but Olson and Walker each knocked down threes to make it a 13-point Loyola advantage with 3:12 on the clock.
Conley finished with game-highs of 20 points and 14 rebounds, and Fulton was the only other Peacock in double-figures with 10.