Rockets Fall in Season Opener at Loyola (IL) 62-50 - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Courtesy: UT Sports Information

Rockets Fall in Season Opener at Loyola (IL) 62-50

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CHICAGO, IL – Loyola (IL) jumped out to an early first-half lead and proceeded to turn away every Toledo comeback attempt on Friday evening in the Rockets' 62-50 loss to the Ramblers in Gentile Arena. It was the season opener for both schools.

Sophomore G Julius Brown paced the Rockets offensively with 15 points (13 in the first half) with senior G Dominique Buckley and junior G Rian Pearson contributing nine and eight points, respectively. Pearson also grabbed a team-high eight rebounds

Senior F Ben Averkamp led Loyola (IL) with 15 points and nine boards and helped the Ramblers compile a 42-30 rebounding advantage. That glass control led to a 17-4 cushion in second-chance points.

UT could never quite get untracked offensively with a 35.1 field-goal percentage.

"Our trouble tonight was certainly on the offensive end," Toledo Head Coach Tod Kowalczyk said. "It was a physical game, and we didn't do a good enough job of playing with frustration. One area we need to work on finishing layups when there's contact."

Freshman C Nathan Boothe played just 22 minutes after picking up two fouls in the game's opening four minutes. He was held to five points and four rebounds in his collegiate debut.

"Nathan picked up two fouls early and they were both good calls," Kowalczyk said. "He's going to be a very good player for us but he just has to learn to play without fouling."

A key juncture in the game occurred when the Ramblers held Toledo to just one field goal during a 10-minute span midway through the second half. UT had cut the hosts' lead to 38-32 two minutes into the second stanza but Loyola quickly regained a double-digit advantage.

Toledo continues its season-opening three-game, six-day roadtrip on Monday, Nov. 12 at Big Ten foe Minnesota. Tip-off time is set for 7:00 p.m. CT