Neller Lights Up the RAC for 27, but Men's Basketball's Late Rally Falls Short vs. Loyola, 73-63

Freshman Will Wise scored 15 points and added 9 caroms vs. Loyola.
Freshman Will Wise scored 15 points and added 9 caroms vs. Loyola.

Baltimore- UMBC junior guard Brian Neller (Red Bank, N.J.) scored a career-high 27 points, but a late Retriever rally fell short, as visiting Loyola (Md.) defeated UMBC, 73-63 at the RAC Arena.

The Retrievers hit more field goals than their guests, 23-20, but Loyola converted on 31 of 46 free throw attempts, while UMBC hit only 10 of 21.

Freshman post Will Wise (Philadelphia, Pa.) came off the bench and added 15 points and nine rebounds for UMBC (0-3).

Loyola (2-1) junior wing Erik Etherly led the visitors and tied Neller for game honors with 27 points. He earned game rebounding honors with 10.

The lead see-sawed in the first 10 minutes with the Retrievers taking their final lead at 20-19 on  freshman forward Chandler Thomas's (Indianapolis, Ind.) layup at the 10:41 mark of the first stanza. But an Etherly dunk sparked a 10-2 Greyhound run over the next 4:36 and the visitors eventually took a 35-27 lead into halftime.

UMBC would score the first four points of the second frame, but were outscored, 16-4, as Loyola built a 51-34 advantage with 11:08 remaining. Loyola still led, 58-43, with 6:57 when the Retrievers made their run, trimming the deficit to 61-54 on a Neller trey with 2:44 remaining.

But the Greyhounds got a pair of offensive rebounds on the next possession, taking 1:27 off the clock and finally converting on a pair of Dylon Cormier free throws. After a UMBC turnovers, Cormier made two more charity shots and pushed the lead back to double figures at 65-54 with 46 seconds remaining.

Neller hit his career-best seventh trey of the night with six seconds to play. He ended the night 8-of-13 from the floor and 7-of-12 from long range. He moved into a tie for fourth place with seven other players who have hit seven 3-point field goals in a game for UMBC.

UMBC had a slight edge in shooting, 43.4 percent to 41.7 percent for the Greyhounds, and dropped the rebound battle by a narrow 38-37 margin.

UMBC heads to VMI for a 6:00 p.m. tilt on Saturday, Nov. 19.