UIC can’t overcome slow start at Northwestern

A 1-for-14 start from the field put UIC in a major hole Monday at Northwestern, and the Flames’ offense never fully picked up against their suburban rival.

UIC (3-10) fought to within seven points in the second half against Northwestern (8-4), but the Wildcats held off the Flames 63-46.

“It’s frustrating to see how well we play in the second half and still find ourselves in a hole,” UIC coach Howard Moore said.

Photo: David Banks | USA Today Sports
Photo: David Banks | USA Today Sports

The Flames fell behind by as many as 18 points in the first half and entered the break down 31-16. They still trailed by 13 points entering the final eight minutes, but then junior guard D’Juan Miller led UIC on an 8-2 to cut Northwestern’s lead to seven.

Miller drilled a 3-pointer. On the next possession, he found junior forward Jason McClellan for another triple. Then he drew a foul and made both free throws.

Miller finished with team-highs of 13 points and seven assists off the bench.

“I thought D’Juan’s energy in the second half changed the game and I expect to see that out of him going forward,” Moore said.

Northwestern retaliated on its home floor with an 11-3 run to bump its lead back to 15 points.

None of UIC’s starters reached double figures in scoring, as senior guard Marc Brown led the group with eight points on 2-for-14 shooting. Junior forward Jake Wiegand grabbed 10 rebounds.

Northwestern was led by 22 points from freshman point guard Bryant McIntosh and 17 points from junior center Alex Olah.

“We will continue to stay positive through this rough patch and be ready for another tough road game at Bradley,” Moore said.

Author: Jesse Kramer

Jesse Kramer is the founder of The Catch and Shoot. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He has had work featured on SI.com, College Insider, The Comeback/Awful Announcing, and 247Sports.

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