The bench steps up as the Wolf Pack secure the win over Bethel

Caroline Gonzalez

The Loyola men’s basketball team secured their second straight win tonight with their over time victory against the Bethel University Wildcats. The Wolf Pack and the Wildcats traded baskets for the majority of the game, with neither team able to extend the lead by more than four for the entire second half.

Johnny Griffin Jr. had yet another double-double, recording 26 points and 12 rebounds. Griffin Jr., being one of four big men for Loyola, was able to remain active in the game despite four of his teammates fouling out.

“I knew I had to be in the game. I just did my best to make good defensive plays and rebound the ball,” said Griffin Jr.

Sixty-one total fouls were called tonight, forcing a total of seven players to foul out. Nate Pierre, Jalen Grey, who recored 14 points, Ethan Turner, and Robert White were amongst the seven who fouled out.

Nick Parker, Chase Eckholdt, Johnny Griffin Jr., Tre’Von Jasmine, and Trey LaForge remained in the final minutes of overtime. With only two starting players eligible to play, the bench took charge. Chase Eckholdt had five assists, Trey LaForge had 12 points while playing 13 minutes, and Nick Parker hit two big three-pointers including the final two free throws to secure the win for the Wolf Pack.

“I knew they were big free throws. I told myself to forget about the free throws I missed earlier. My team needed me to step up and knock them down to get the win,” Parker said.

With the Wildcats unable to hit a shot in the last four seconds of play, the Wolf Pack came out on top 84-81.

With this win, the Wolf Pack are now 5-2 in conference play, putting them in third place in the Southern States Athletic Conference.

The Wolf Pack will tip off again on Monday, Jan. 16 at 5:00 p.m. against Martin Methodist.