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Deep funk continues

FLAMES ICE COLD, LOSE 7TH STRAIGHT

January 29, 2010

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Robo Kreps had 16 points, but the Flames lost their seventh straight.

It’s been a rough season for UIC, but things got historically bad on Thursday night.

The Flames shot just 20 percent from the field, a school record for futility, in a 79-43 loss at Wright State.

“When you shoot 10-for-50 against a team like Wright State, it’s going to be very tough to win,” UIC coach Jimmy Collins said. “When you shoot 10-for-50 against anybody, it’s going to be tough to win.

“I thought we had some good looks (early). We had some layups that didn’t go down.”

UIC (5-15, 1-9 Horizon League) dropped its seventh straight and is now in the throes of its longest slide since the end of the 1998-99 season when the Flames lost their final eight games.

Vaughn Duggins and Troy Tabler each scored 14 points to lead Wright State (13-8, 6-4), which finished the season sweep of the Flames. Cory Cooperwood contributed 13 points and nine rebounds and N’Gai Evans and Todd Brown each added 11 points for the Raiders, who shot 51 percent.

Robo Kreps led the Flames with a game-high 16 points despite shooting just 3-for-15 from the field. He was 10-for-13 from the free-throw line. Chris Buchanan added 11 points off the bench and Jeremy Buttell chipped in nine points and seven rebounds.

The Flames showed fight and energy in the first half by overcoming an early 10-point deficit to forge a 23-23 tie on a layup by Brad Birton with 6:24 left before halftime.

But the Raiders took over from there, outscoring UIC 11-1 to end the first period, a run that included two three-point baskets by Tabler and one by Duggins. WSU took a 34-24 lead into the locker room.

Buttell’s three-pointer with 16:41 left pulled the Flames to within 38-31. But the Raiders steadily increased the lead as the game wore on.

WSU held UIC without a basket for the game’s final 9:42.

“Win, lose or draw, you’ve got to start believing in yourself,” Collins said, implying the Flames are getting discouraged.

FLAMES FLICKERS:UIC’s previous worst shooting effort came against Southern Illinois on Dec. 21, 1998 when the Flames shot 21.1 percent. … The team’s 10 field goals were the fewest since it had nine against Michigan State on Dec. 13, 1998. … Sophomore Zavion Neely went scoreless for the first time this season. … Only six Flames scored in the game and just four had field goals.

In other recent news:
Hayward's star continues to rise (vs. Butler) (1/23/10)
Robbins emerges, but Crusaders too tough (vs. Valpo) (1/22/10)
McCammon puts daggers in Flames (vs. Loyola, plus roster news) (1/15/10)
Road still unkind to Flames (at Cleveland St.) (1/10/10)
Buttell's big night can't save UIC (at Youngstown St.) (1/8/10)
Flames look listless, lost (vs. Wright St.) (1/3/10)
Kreps gets free ride as Flames beat Titans (vs. Detroit) (12/31/09)
Neely flips switch, Flames burn Rockets (vs. Toledo) (12/30/09)
Coal in Flames’ stockings (at Wisconsin) (12/28/09)
Zips dominate boards, extinguish Flames (at Akron) (12/22/09)