Home Local Sports Three score in double-figures as Aces downed at Loyola

Three score in double-figures as Aces downed at Loyola

Gasper, Miller, and Casteel combine for 42 of Evansville’s 63 points


CHICAGO, Ill. - The University of Evansville women’s basketball team got off to a hot start, but was cooled-off in the second quarter in an 82-63 loss to Loyola in Chicago, Ill. on Sunday afternoon.

“The first quarter wasn’t too bad. We gave them some easy looks and some things they shouldn’t have, but that second quarter is unacceptable,” said Aces head coach Matt Ruffing. “Credit to Kate (Achter) and her staff. They got their kids to play harder than we did and that’s something we’ve seen over and over and over again.”

Junior guard Kerri Gasper (15) and redshirt sophomore guard Marley Miller (14) combined for 29 points to lead the Aces while freshman guard Kayla Casteel added 13 points for UE. Gasper came within range of a triple-double, tallying seven boards and five assists to go along with her 15 points. For the Ramblers, Jessica Cerda paced Loyola with 16 points, all coming in the opening half.

Miller got Evansville off to a fast start as the Olney, Ill. native scored the Aces’ first five points and put UE ahead 5-2 in the opening two minutes. After Loyola pushed back with an 8-0 spree to take a 10-5 lead, sophomore guard Macie Lively drained a jumper and Miller got involved again with her second triple to tie the game at 10. A heavily contested first quarter ended with a pair of Rambler free throws that gave Loyola a narrow 19-17 advantage.

Loyola controlled much of the second quarter as the Ramblers utilized a 16-2 run in the first six minutes of the period to open up a 16-point 35-19 lead. Gasper helped stop the run with a pair of free throws under the three minute mark in the frame, but Loyola closed the quarter with an 8-0 run to take a 43-21 lead into the halftime break.
The Aces offense got going once again in the third quarter as Evansville cut its deficit to 19 twice in the first three minutes of the period. It was the Ramblers who once again had an answer as Loyola manufactured a 6-0 run to push its lead to 24 at 51-27 with 4:55 left in the quarter. With 53 second left in the frame, Casteel splashed home a three-pointer to trim Loyola’s lead to 17 before the Ramblers responded with five-straight points to grab a 22-point advantage. In the final seconds of the quarter, Casteel hit her second triple of the game as the Aces headed into the fourth quarter trailing 64-45.

In the fourth period, Evansville got its deficit as low as 18 on two separate occasions, but each time Loyola responded. Two free-throws by Gasper trimmed the Ramblers’ lead to 75-57 with 2:20 left in the contest, but Abby O’Connor hit a three in response as Loyola earned the 82-63 win.

The Aces were out-shot by the Ramblers in the game, 50% (33-66) to 38.5% (20-52), while Loyola won the rebounding battle, 40-28.

Evansville returns home to battle Indiana State on February 2 at 7 p.m. in the Aces’ annual Play 4 Kay game.