Nov. 29, 2004
Baltimore, Md. - Junior Charlie Bell took the game-tying three-pointer as the final buzzer sounded at Reitz Arena on Monday night. His shot rattled off the front end of the rim and Delaware escaped with a 63-60 win over Loyola.
"It was a good look," says Bell. "I'll take that shot with confidence every time."
Bell, who led the Greyhounds with 16 points and nine rebounds, came off the bench and gave Loyola a spark early in the first half. After taking its first lead five minutes into the game, Loyola would not trail for the next 24 minutes.
Very similar to its home-opener against Navy, the Greyhounds made a push to end the first half. Leading 28-27 with just over a minute to go, freshman Brad Farrell hit a jumper, Bell knocked down a pair of free throws and Head Coach Jimmy Patsos set up a buzzer-beating give-and-go between Bell and freshman Rashaud Nixon that resulted in a Bell three-point field goal and a 35-27 lead.
The Greyhounds, however, came out cold in the second half and made their first field goal, a lay-in by Bernard Allen, at 10:47 in the period. Allen's shot tied the game at 40-40. Delaware's Mike Slattery, who scored 13 of the Blue Hens' next 15 points, hit a three-pointer to pull Delaware ahead for good.
"I knew Loyola was a decent team and would play hard for their new coach," says Slattery. "I just didn't expect them to be so good."
Slattery's Blue Hens held a six-point lead with 1:38 left on the clock, but Loyola would make it very interesting down the stretch. Sophomore Shane James would drive to the hoop and convert on multiple coast-to-coast lay-ups to keep the margin at four points until Bell's tip-in made the score 60-58 with 29 seconds remaining. Several missed free throws on both ends kept the game within reach, but Bell's heave fell short as time expired.
"We have to play with confidence," says Patsos. "We need to be able to finish out games."
The Greyhounds, 0-4, forced 16 Delaware turnovers and held the Blue Hens to 1-for-13 shooting from beyond the arc. Loyola, however, only made 9-of-19 free throws in the second half while shooting 30 percent from the floor. Farrell complimented Bell with 12 points while Allen had nine points before fouling out.
"This is another tough loss," says Bell. "But right now we're 0-0 in the league and tomorrow we'll focus on Saint Peter's."
The Greyhounds travel to Saint Peter's this Thursday for a 7 p.m. game with the Peacocks.