Yesterday the unluckiest and luckiest teams thus far in the Horizon League, according to efficiency margin, met at U.S. Cellular Arena. In something that may foretell different results moving forward, Loyola trailed by as many as 13 points in the first half, but rebounded for a 71-65 victory over Milwaukee. Loyola scored 41 second half points on the way to the victory.
The offense on Saturday was carried by Geoff McCammon. As Brad Stevens pointed out once, the difference between Loyola's wins and Loyola's losses is the production of their senior shooting guard. McCammon played 37 minutes of the bench and scored 21 points on 8-11 shooting.
The Ramblers need more night like that from him. The only games Loyola has lost this season when he scored more than 15 points were at DePaul and Detroit. In fact, the team is now 5-2 when he reaches that threshold. When the Ramblers have been blown out in conference it's when McCammon has faltered. He scored just two points in the Ramblers' loss to Wright State and three in the 18-point loss to Cleveland State.
The rest of the offense came from Terrance Hill, Ben Averkamp and Andy Polka. It's also worth noting that Courtney Stanley had five assists and just two turnovers. Loyola shot 55.1 percent in the victory and held previously hot Milwaukee to just 39.7 percent from the field.
Loyola's next game is the cross-city rivalry game against UIC. Can the Ramblers keep things going and get on a run that takes them back near .500 in conference? With the Flames and Youngstown State coming up next the opportunity is there. Loyola has to seize it.