UIC erased a 17-point hole in the second half Friday against San Francisco but failed to come out on top in an 82-80 loss.
After sophomore forward Dikembe Dixson dropped in a contested 3-pointer in the final minute to force an 80-80 tie, UIC had several chances to take the lead in the final minute.
Freshman guard Godwin Boahen turned the ball over with 27 seconds remaining, and after a pair of San Francisco free throws, Dixson missed a jumper and the Flames missed a handful of tip opportunities. Boahen missed an open 3-point look that would have given them the lead to cap the possession with 4.8 seconds remaining.
However, San Francisco missed two free throws giving UIC one last chance down 82-80. Boahen drove the length of the floor, got to the rim and drew contract, but there was no whistle and his layup attempt flew over the rim.
Although Boahen struggled in the final minute, he was the main reason UIC had any chance in this game despite committing 25 turnovers and shooting 15-of-28 at the foul line. Boahen finished with 12 points, six rebounds and seven assists in his collegiate debut while Dixson scored a team-high 15 points.
Junior forward Tai Odiase had 12 points and four blocks while junior college transfer Kyle Guice added 11 points and hit three 3-pointers off the bench.
The Flames return to Chicago for their home opener Wednesday against UTSA.