NEW ORLEANS, La. – After opening round play this morning, the Loyola University New Orleans men’s basketball team (19-9) learned they will face Emmanuel (18-13) in the quarterfinals of the SSAC Tournament. Tip-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. CST at Darlington School.
The Wolfpack, who earned the one seed from the West division, will look to extend their season high five game win streak into tournament play.
Last season, the ‘Pack made a run to the semi-finals in the conference tourney. Loyola defeated Brewton 66-64, downed Lee 59-49, and then fell to Southern Poly 55-62.
Robert Lovaglio returns after being named SSAC player of the week. In the two victories over William Carey and Mobile last week, the sophomore averaged 17 points, five rebounds, and 2.5 assists. Lovaglio leads the team with 7.14 rebounds and 2.41 assists per game. Rob also averages 16.73 points a game, and his .527 field goal percentage is the fifth best in the SSAC.
Senior standouts Corey Gray and Cameron Cates hope to extend their final season. Gray is nationally ranked in the NAIA in eight categories and just landed himself in the 11 spot on Loyola’s all time career-scoring list with 1,345 points. Gray is 15 points shy of tying #10 Sam Trombatore. Corey leads the team in scoring, averaging 17.46 points per game.
Cates has scored in double figures in nine of the past 11 games. In that span, the senior recorded two 20+ scoring games, including a career high 28 points. Cates is averaging 12.5 points and 5.96 rebounds per game. Cameron has achieved three double doubles on the year, including two in the past two weeks.
Loyola hosted Emmanuel in The Den on December 3 of this season. The ‘Pack led the Lions 34-23 at half, but succumbed in the second, eventually losing 55-65. The Wolfpack are 0-2 lifetime against the Lions.
Senior Asmatiek Fields leads Emmanuel in scoring and rebounds with 12.93 points and 6.40 boards per game. Fields is shooting 49% from the floor this season.
On this extra day in February, Emmanuel (#4 from East) leaped over William Carey (#5 from West) 60-42 in the opening round play-in-game to advance to Thursday’s contest. Junior Isaiah Tyus scored a team high 19 points.
The Wolfpack, who have won eight of their past 10 games, enters Thursday’s match-up averaging 73.79 points a game. Loyola is ranked 2nd in the NAIA in free throw percentage (.743), 32nd in three-point field goal percentage (.354), and 43rd in total rebound defense (34.071).
You can listen live to Thursday’s game at: http://www.livestream.com/loyolawolfpack
You can follow the live stats at: http://www.dakstats.com/WebSync/Pages/Webcasts.aspx?association=10
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