Thursday, November 17, 2016
Wolf Pack edge Gold Rush to extend XULA streak
NEW ORLEANS — Nate Pierre's basket with 23 seconds remaining lifted Loyola to a 78-76 victory against Xavier University of Louisiana in a men's basketball matchup of NAIA city rivals at XULA's Convocation Center.
Pierre, one of five double-figure scorers for the Wolf Pack (3-2), scored on a pass from Johnny Griffin. The Gold Rush (1-4) missed twice from the floor in the closing moments, including a short shot in the lane with two seconds remaining.
There were 15 lead changes and five ties in the second half.
Eric Brown scored 20 points and made 6-of-7 3-pointers for Loyola. Pierre scored 17, Griffin 14, Nick Parker 12 and Jalen Gray 10. Griffin had 11 rebounds, six assists and two blocks, and Gray had a career-high 11 assists.
Mike Williams scored 25 points, the most by a XULA freshman since the 2006-07 season. Redshirt freshman Innocent Kukulu scored a career-high 18 points, and Jalen David had 15. Williams and Kukulu both made 4-of-5 3-pointers.
Loyola led 39-38 at halftime.
Both teams shot well from the floor — Loyola was at 65.3 percent overall, 66.7 (12-of-18) on 3-pointers; XULA finished at 54.9 percent overall, 62.5 (10-of-16) on 3-pointers.
It was the fourth consecutive loss for XULA, which is ranked 25th. The Gold Rush will play LeMoyne-Owen of NCAA Division II for homecoming at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Convocation Center.
Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director
XAVIER UNIVERSITY OF LOUISIANA