Gary Talton leads UIC with 8 points.
It’s been a highly contested game so far as I expected. The Flames took a very quick 5-0 lead at the beginning of the game. But then the Flames began to miss shots and commit turnovers.
The Crusaders were able to score points off of those mistakes. At one point Valpo lead by as much as nine, they also began to out-rebound the Flames.
They also managed to use UIC’s size against them by sneaking players into the paint behind UIC big men Josh Crittle, Hayden Humes, and Will Simonton.
With just under seven minutes left, Gary Talton and Daniel Barnes took over and brought the Flames back into the game. They tied the game at 24 with three minutes remaining before halftime.
It would go back and forth from there until Valparaiso forward Ryan Broekhoff hit a three at the buzzer to take a 33-30 lead at the half. The Flames will need Talton and Barnes to keep up this pace if they are to win this game.
They will also need a better effort from the boys up front. They also need to tighten up on defense. The second half will be very interesting.
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