UChicago men’s basketball catches fire in first half, routs Lake Forest 99-54

Nate Brooks and John Steinberg
Nate Brooks and John Steinberg

CHICAGO, Ill. – The University of Chicago men's basketball team couldn't miss in the first 20 minutes of Monday's game. The Maroons made 67 percent of their field goals and 70 percent of their three-pointers in the first half en route to a 99-54 victory over Lake Forest College.

UChicago and Lake Forest both evened their season records at 1-1. The 45-point margin of victory was the team's largest since the Maroons defeated Carnegie Mellon University 100-55 on Jan. 13, 2012.

Everything was clicking for the Maroons on offense as the home team canned seven of its first nine three-pointers. An initial 15-4 lead ballooned all the way to 42-14 over a nine-minute stretch in the first half. UChicago dominated the boards and quickly sprinted back in transition to earn layups and jumpers on the other end. Point guards Royce Muskeyvalley and Wayne Simon utilized their quickness to penetrate the middle of Lake Forest's defense and dish to shooters on wing, who kept nailing the open looks.

The defense was also on point with aggressive help defense at the top of the key. Forwards regularly jumped out around the arc to prevent drives and quickly recovered back to their positions in the post. The tactic disrupted Lake Forest's offensive sets and forced tough shots that UChicago cleaned up off the glass. The Maroons held a 20-7 rebounding edge in the first half and on several occasions, they bulled their way to offensive rebounds off missed free throws to score put-back layups.

The home team headed into halftime with a 51-20 lead. Senior forward Sam Gage and Simon scored nine points each while Muskeyvalley added eight points.

The second half's pace slowed a bit due to a proliferation of fouls, including 12 fouls in the first seven minutes of the half. With a large lead in hand, UChicago's bench players saw plenty of action and contributed 53 of the team's 99 points. A total of 13 players scored for the Maroons and they continued to share the ball effectively. UChicago ended up with 26 assists compared to only four by the Foresters.

Final rebounding stats were firmly in the home team's favor (39-23), including an 11-4 edge on the offensive glass. The Maroons also committed only six turnovers while the Foresters totaled 11 turnovers.

UChicago Team Stats & Leaders
Field-goal percentage – 59.0 percent (36-61)
Three-point percentage – 47.8 percent (11-23)
Free-throw percentage – 64.0 percent (16-25)
John Steinberg (Guard, So.) – 12 points, 5 rebounds
Charlie Hughes (Forward, Sr.) – 12 points, 4 assists
Nate Brooks (Forward, So.) – 7 points, 10 rebounds
Royce Muskeyvalley (Guard, Jr.) – 10 points, 5 assists, 3 steals

Lake Forest Team Stats & Leaders
Field-goal percentage – 31.9 percent (15-47)
Three-point percentage – 18.2 percent (2-11)
Free-throw percentage – 84.6 percent (22-26)
Torrey Davis – 12 points
James Stack – 9 points

NEXT GAME:

  • Friday, Nov. 22 – UChicago vs. Whitman College (St. Louis, Mo.), 6 PM