Redbirds' second half surge comes up short against Loyola

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Illinois State head coach Dan Muller and the Redbirds are now 3-2 in Missouri Valley Conference play after falling to Loyola on Wednesday night in Normal. Illinois State head coach Dan Muller and the Redbirds are now 3-2 in Missouri Valley Conference play after falling to Loyola on Wednesday night in Normal.

NORMAL -- Illinois State whittled a 12-point deficit down to five by halftime and then overtook Loyola 46-45 with 7:58 remaining in the game but the Ramblers were too much and came away with a 68-61 win on Wednesday night at Redbird Arena.

The loss drops Illinois State to 9-8 overall and 3-2 in Missouri Valley Conference play, while Loyola improves to 13-4 and 3-2 in the MVC.

The Redbirds shot 46.9 percent from the floor and 47.6 percent from deep but allowed the Ramblers to shoot 52.3 percent from the floor to go with 16-of-18 shooting at the free throw line. Loyola also won the turnover battle 15-18 and outrebounded Illinois State 27-24.

Illinois State was led by forward Phil Fayne's 14 points plus 13 points from Milik Yarbrough and 11 points each from Keyshawn Evans and Isaac Gassman (a career-high for the redshirt freshman).

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