Men’s Basketball: Wildcats match best start in school history with win over Loyola Maryland

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Men’s Basketball: Wildcats match best start in school history with win over Loyola Maryland

Bryant McIntosh dribbles the ball up the court. The sophomore guard led the Wildcats with 33 points and 8 assists against Loyola Maryland.

Bryant McIntosh dribbles the ball up the court. The sophomore guard led the Wildcats with 33 points and 8 assists against Loyola Maryland.

Daily file photo by Sam Schumacher

Bryant McIntosh dribbles the ball up the court. The sophomore guard led the Wildcats with 33 points and 8 assists against Loyola Maryland.

Daily file photo by Sam Schumacher

Daily file photo by Sam Schumacher

Bryant McIntosh dribbles the ball up the court. The sophomore guard led the Wildcats with 33 points and 8 assists against Loyola Maryland.

Dan Waldman, Reporter

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Men’s Basketball


Northwestern matched its best start in school history on Sunday, defeating Loyola Maryland, 74-59. The win, however, was overshadowed by the announcement before the game that senior center Alex Olah is out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his left foot.

The Wildcats (12-1) have not had a better start to a season since the 1930-31 season, but NU struggled at first against the Greyhounds (1-10), trailing 20-6 to start the game.

“They were beating us to loose balls, and attacking us off the dribble,” coach Chris Collins said. “We kind of had that holiday look in our eyes.”

Without Olah, the Cats had trouble early competing for rebounds, getting outrebounded 20-11 in the first half. As a result the injury, Collins decided to shed freshman center Dererk Pardon of his redshirt label.

“Coach told me that they needed me and it was a big decision,” Pardon said. “I felt like I would let my team down if I didn’t take off the redshirt.”

NU went into halftime trailing 33-22, but sophomore guard Bryant McIntosh, who scored half of the team’s first-half points, kept the Cats close enough to be competitive in the second half.

NU had trouble containing Loyola’s center Franz Rassman, who scored 11 points in the first half, but the Cats’ inability to score from three presented an even larger challenge.

Before Sunday’s game, NU averaged 10.2 made three-pointers per game, but the Cats didn’t make their first three until sophomore guard Scottie Lindsey connected from deep with 1:21 left in the first half.

“McIntosh was phenomenal,” Collins said. “He carried us tonight — he made so many plays. We found something with our pick-and-roll action…they were having a real hard time guarding him.”

After halftime, NU went on a 7-0 run to cut the lead to 40-37. And with 13:08 left, freshman forward Aaron Falzon hit a three to tie the game at 42 — the first time Loyola didn’t lead in the game.

“They had a really tough time we found in our pick-and-roll game,” Collins said. “We were spreading our shooters, putting him (McIntosh) in the pick-and-rolls — they were having a hard time guarding it.”

McIntosh then converted on a floater to give the Cats their first lead of the game with 11:44 remaining. The guard took over the game for NU, adding 21 second-half points, and finishing with 33 points and eight assists.

“We found shooters in transition,” McIntosh said. “We kind of just threw ourselves into competing and shots finally started falling for us. That’s just kind of how the game goes.”

Email: danielwaldman2019@u.northwestern.edu
Twitter: @dan_waldman

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