Road doesn't get easier
Radford's late run drops Flames to 0-2
By Mike Pankow
November 11, 2018
UIC coach Steve McClain expected some bumps in the road when he put together a daunting non-conference schedule.
McClain's Flames encountered some at the hands of defending Big South Conference champion Radford as the host Highlanders pulled away late for an 88-78 victory on Friday night.
Carlik Jones was too much to handle as he scored 24 points and handed out 10 assists to lead the Highlanders (2-0), who shot 47.5 percent from the field. Donald Hicks contributed 16 points, including four 3-pointers, and Travis Fields Jr. added 15 points.
Tarkus Ferguson led the Flames (0-2) with 22 points after a late surge, including a career-high five 3-pointers. Marcus Ottey contributed 18 points while Godwin Boahen and Michael Diggins added 11 points each.
The game was a dogfight for most of the evening. The Flames, who 50 percent from the field, surged ahead 44-41 on Ottey's 3-pointer with 16:25 remaining.
UIC tied the game at 50-50 on Boahen's layup, but moments later the game turned when Blount was whistled for a technical foul and was removed from by McClain.
With Blount on the bench for nearly four minutes, the Highlanders went on an 16-5 run, capped by a 3-pointer by Hicks, for a 66-55 advantage with 6:26 left.
Things didn't get any better as Radford extended the lead to as many as 19 -- 76-57 -- with 3:17 left after a Fields' 3-pointer.
Ferguson scored 14 points in the final 1:10 to help the Flames close to 10 at the final buzzer, but the horse had already left the barn.
UIC returns to action Monday night for its third consecutive road game against Duquesne in Pittsburgh.
FLAMES FLICKERS: For the second straight game, UIC was handily outrebounded, this time 38-28 after being Notre Dame won the board battle 51-36 in the opener. ... The Flames have outshot both of their opponents so far this season. ... UIC's 13 3-pointers against Radford were the most since it hit 14 against Youngstown State in January of last season. ... Diggins was 4-for-4 from the field and made a career-best 3-pointers. ... Sophomore Jamie Ahale scored his first points as a Flame, knocking down a pair of triples.