The Greyhounds won the tip-off, promptly claiming the advantage. The Eagles could not seem to gain their footing as Loyola went on a 10-0 streak, leaving American scoreless over halfway into the first quarter. Senior forward Emily Johns scored the first points for the Eagles, making two free throws near the end of the quarter.
Loyola’s offense shot a 3-point percentage of 50 percent and a field goal percentage of 49.2 percent, all while the Eagles shot 0 percent in both categories. Ultimately, the Eagles' offense was no match for the Greyhounds in the first quarter. At the buzzer, the score was 14-5 with Loyola in the lead, while all 5 points scored by the Eagles came from free throws.
Entering the second quarter, senior guard Ivy Bales scored the Eagles' first field goal following two minutes of play. While unable to gain the lead, a standout performance from Johns led the Eagles to score 19 points. The Eagles’ success in this quarter could be accredited to their rebound game, attaining more than double the Greyhounds’ rebounds. By the end of the first half, the Eagles reduced Loyola’s lead to only one point, leaving a final score of 25-24.
At the end of the half, Loyola junior forward Lex Therien led the game in scoring with 15 points, followed by Johns with 12.
The third quarter became extremely competitive, with Johns scoring the quarter’s first point and providing the Eagles their first lead in the game. The Eagles forced 5 turnovers from the Greyhounds, as well as three steals in comparison to Loyola’s zero. Bales’ performance led to two steals as well as four fastbreak points, ultimately helping the Eagles end the quarter tied 38-38.
Despite their strong battle back, the fourth quarter did not end in the Eagles’ favor. American found themselves falling back into the same offensive struggles, ultimately stuck relying on free throws. Down 47-43, Johns, Bales and graduate student forward Lauren Stack became prominent figures in the Eagles’ offensive game. With roughly four and a half minutes left to play, the game was tied 53-53. Nonetheless, the Greyhounds were able to go 6-0 and ultimately ended the game with a 59-55 victory.
Stack ended the game with a career-high 26 points and the lead scorer title.
The loss to Loyola ended American’s undefeated streak in the Patriot League. As the Eagles look toward their next game, head coach Tiffany Coll emphasized “getting the flow with each other again and getting that chemistry.”
The Eagles take on Holy Cross away on Jan. 24 at 7 p.m. and hope to continue their winning record in the Patriot League.
This article was edited by Penelope Jennings, Delaney Hoke and Abigail Pritchard. Copy editing done by Luna Jinks, Isabelle Kravis, Liah Argiropoulos and Olivia Citarella.