Alma holds off UChicago men's basketball 76-74

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Several chances to force overtime fell short in the final seconds as the University of Chicago men's basketball team lost to Alma College 76-74 in the Bill Sudeck Holiday Classic on Saturday.

The Maroons fell to 6-5 while the Scots improved to 5-6. Additionally, UChicago junior forward Sam Gage earned All-Tournament Team honors with an average of 12.0 points and 8.0 rebounds over the two games.

A pair of three-pointers put UChicago up 10-2 in the opening four minutes of the game. However, Alma battled back from a 20-11 deficit to take a 30-29 lead. DJ Beckman kept the Scots in the game with 13 points in 13 minutes of play. The Maroons recovered and went into halftime with a 38-34 advantage, thanks in part to 11 points from Alex Pyper.

Alma came out fast in the second half with a 13-3 run to take a six-point lead. The two sides exchanged leads throughout the half, with the Scots up 75-71 with one minute left in regulation. The Maroons got within two points in the game's final seconds and had several opportunities to tie the game. But the shots wouldn't fall as Alma held on for the win.

UChicago was dominant on the boards for the second-straight night with a 45-30 rebounding edge, including 23 offensive.

UChicago Team Stats & Leaders
Field-goal percentage - 42.6 percent (29-68)
Three-point percentage - 46.2 percent (6-13)
Free-throw percentage - 58.8 percent (10-17)
Sam Gage
- 18 points, 6 rebounds
Alex Pyper - 13 points, 5 rebounds
Nate Brooks - 4 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks

Alma Team Stats & Leaders
Field-goal percentage - 50.0 percent (28-56)
Three-point percentage - 31.6 percent (6-19)
Free-throw percentage - 70.0 percent (14-20)
DJ Beckman - 20 points, 4 rebounds
Isiah Law - 12 points, 3 rebounds
Brian Sheridan - 12 points, 3 rebounds

NEXT GAME: Saturday, Jan. 5 - Washington University-St. Louis at UChicago, 3 PM.