CHICAGO – Stellar shooting – led by the early hot hand of Noah Karras – helped the University of Chicago men's basketball team bounce back with a convincing 100-84 league victory over Carnegie Mellon Sunday afternoon at the Ratner Athletic Center.
The win kept the Maroons (12-6, 5-2 University Athletic Association), who fell to Case Western Reserve on Friday, tied for first place in the conference standings before they head on a four-game road swing. Also standing at 5-2 in the UAA includes two foes UChicago owns wins over but will see one more time, this time on the road: WashU and Emory.
Karras – who had 20 in the first half alone – led the Maroons with 23 points on 9-of-16 shooting, Dominic Laravie had 22 points and six boards, Cole Schmitz chipped in 16 points, five rebounds and four assists and Justin Jackson added 11 points off the bench in the win.
It was also Karras who set UChicago's offensive tone early, as the senior drained his first four attempts – three of them 3s – to propel the Maroons to a 15-2 start. Justin Jackson's triple at the 13:24 mark would push that lead to 16 (20-4) before Carnegie Mellon (8-10, 3-4) would respond.
The Tartans would claw back to within five, 24-19, at the 9:19 mark, but a Karras three-point play and Jordan Baum make from downtown shifted the momentum back to UChicago. The Maroons led at the break by 12, 53-41.
Carnegie Mellon opened the second period with another run, scoring seven unanswered points before Schmitz delivered a three-ball for the Maroons to stall the surge and keep UChicago up by eight, 56-48. The Tartans would remain within six to seven points midway through the half before two key makes from Jackson and a flurry of points – 10 over the course of two minutes – from Laravie put UChicago back in control, up 20, 79-59, with 10:22 left.
CMU made one final push to get within eight at 79-71 (6:49), but UChicago's offense would again answer the call, capped by a Ryan Jacobsen breakaway dunk that made the advantage 17 with four minutes to play.
Baum had a solid all-around game for UChicago, totaling eight points, 10 assists, five steals, and two blocks, and Jacobsen added eight points, seven rebounds and three blocks.
The Maroons shot 50.6 percent (39-of-77) for the game and 43.3 percent (13-of-30) from 3, while the Tartans recorded percentages of 53.7 (29-of-54) and 37.5 (6-of-16). UChicago edged CMU on the boards, 34-30, but gained a huge advantage in the turnover column, committing just nine giveaways while forcing the guests into 19.
Zach Howarth led the Tartans with a game-high 29 points in the loss.
The 100 points marked the first time UChicago hit the century mark since a 121-101 win at Rhodes College on Dec. 17, 2016. It was the first time the Maroons scored 100 points at Ratner since the 2013-14 season, when UChicago downed Kalamazoo on Dec. 1, 2013.
- Friday, Feb. 1: UChicago at Case Western Reserve, 7 p.m. CT