CHICAGO – Solid defense and free throw shooting proved fruitful for the University of Chicago men's basketball team on Friday night. The hosts got back into the win column with an 80-70 victory over visiting New York University.
The Maroons (5-8 record) snapped a four-game losing streak and moved to 1-1 in the University Athletic Association (UAA) standings. The Violets dropped to 8-4 overall (1-1 UAA).
UChicago got out to an early 12-5 lead with point guard Jordan Baum setting the table. The sophomore assisted on three baskets and hit a three-pointer of his own in that time. Baum picked good scenarios to pick up the pace and thread the needle: he dished out eight assists in the first half and several times tossed perfect passes in transition that led to easy points on the run.
The home side got rolling midway through the half, embarking on an 18-3 run that put NYU in a 33-16 hole. Senior guard Jake Fenlon scored the last six points of the surge, including an emphatic dunk with 5:25 remaining. Junior forward Ryan Jacobsen also threw down a slam during that stretch thanks to a great outlet pass in transition.
Defense was UChicago's calling card in the first half. The Maroons stayed solid in their man-to-man scheme, contesting shots and limiting the Violets to 27 percent shooting from the field.
Fenlon then pushed the lead to 41-22 with a three-pointer and two free throws. He tallied 14 first-half points. Sophomore guard Cole Schmitz put an exclamation on the half with a put-back with one second left, giving the hosts a 43-24 advantage at the break. The Maroons made 7 of 16 three-pointers in the period. Senior forward Collin Barthel put up nine points and nabbed nine rebounds working down in the post.
UChicago appeared to be cruising along, as junior guard Justin Jackson converted back-to-back layups at 58-42. However, NYU started to find its rhythm on offense and began sinking almost every jumper. It took just over four-and-a-half minutes for the visitors to claw all the way back to within 59-57.
Despite the momentum being firmly in NYU's corner, UChicago righted the ship once the lead shrunk to two. Eight-straight points combined from Fenlon and Barthel pushed the advantage back to 10.
The free throw line was generous to the Maroons on Friday. With NYU employing a physical brand of defense, UChicago consistently got to the foul line down the stretch. The home side made all 12 of its free throw attempts over the final four minutes to keep the Violets at bay and secure an 80-70 win.
Barthel sank all 10 of his free throws on the evening en route to 19 points and 14 rebounds. Fenlon poured in a game-high 24 points, while Jacobsen totaled 10 points and eight rebounds. Baum contributed 10 assists, nine rebounds and three points.
All told, UChicago shot 42.9 percent on field goals, 32 percent on three-pointers (8-25) and 77.4 percent on free throws (24-31). NYU shot 39.1 percent from the field, 42.1 percent from deep (8-19) and 61.5 percent from the charity stripe (61.5 percent).
The Maroons won the rebounding battle 47-38, and committed 16 turnovers compared to 12 by NYU. Nineteen of the team's 24 made baskets were assisted.
- Sunday, Jan. 14 @ 11:00 AM – Brandeis University at UChicago