January 07, 2016

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) Deontae Hawkins scored 13 points and grabbed five rebounds as Illinois State won its fourth-straight, beating Loyola of Chicago 54-52 on Wednesday night.

DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell added 14 points and four rebounds for the Redbirds (9-7, 3-0 Missouri Valley Conference). Nick Banyard had 10 points and five rebounds. The team averaged 35.3 percent shooting from the field and 57.9 percent from the line.

The Redbirds didn't score a bucket till Banyard sank a layup nearly eight minutes into the first half. They went on to take a 26-21 lead at the break.

Hawkins hit a 3-pointer early in the second half and Banyard hit two more midway to help keep the Redbirds out front throughout the period. With three seconds to go, Banyard blocked a shot by Illinois State's Montel James that would have tied the game.

James led the Ramblers (7-8, 0-3) with 14 points and 14 rebounds.

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