Cameron Krutwig’s triple-double of 22 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds led Loyola-Chicago to a 78-70 victory over Vanderbilt on Wednesday night in the opener of the Basketball Hall of Fame Showcase in Phoenix.
Krutwig grabbed a rebound just before the final buzzer and threw a fist in the air to celebrate his achievement, while hearing cheers from a good number of Ramblers fans in attendance at Talking Stick Resort Arena, home of the NBA’s Phoenix Suns.
Guard Tate Hall scored 16 points for the Ramblers, who won their fifth straight game.
Aaron Nesmith led Vanderbilt with 23 points and guard Saben Lee, a junior from nearby Tempe, Ariz., scored 18 points.
The Ramblers (8-4) used a 12-3 run to take a 24-20 lead with 4:29 left in the first half. Hall had a part of dunks, including one on a fast break during the stretch.
Loyola-Chicago took a 35-31 lead into halftime, with 10 first-half points from Krutwig. The Ramblers made 15 of 28 (53.6 percent) first-half shots.
Loyola-Chicago held the lead for little more than 10 minutes of the second half, until Nesmith knocked down a 3-pointer with 9:22 to go to tie it at 48. The Ramblers reclaimed the lead, but Nesmith fed Ejike Obinna for a dunk to deadlock it at 52 with 7:48 left.
Lucas Williamson’s trey gave Loyola-Chicago a 57-52 lead with seven minutes left. The Ramblers remained in control the rest of the way after Hall’s 3-pointer gave them an eight-point lead at the 5:12 mark.
Scotty Pippen Jr. scored back-to-back layups for Vanderbilt (6-4) with less than three minutes left to cut the Ramblers’ lead to six. The Commodores went to a full-court press but never got closer.
Loyola-Chicago has won five of its last six games against Southeastern Conference opponents. The two teams played each other for the first time since 1935.
—Field Level Media