Junior guard Jordan Moran finished with 12 points and a team-high eight rebounds and three steals but the Lake Forest College men's basketball team dropped its season opener 84-81 to visiting Loras College on Wednesday.
Moran shot 5-for-10 from the field and was one of three players on the team to score in double figures. Junior forward Danny Sotos led the Foresters with 19 points on 9-for-12 shooting from the field while senior forward Orlando Brown added 14 points in just 15 minutes of play.
Lake Forest shot 55.7 percent from the field in the contest but connected on just six of 20 attempts from three-point range and on seven of 12 foul shots. Loras was 52.4 percent overall on field goal attempts and 8-for-24 from beyond the arc. The Duhawks also made 10 of 14 free throws. The Foresters had a slight 32-28 advantage in rebounds but committed 20 turnovers to the visitors' 15.
Loras jumped scored the game's first seven points and was ahead by as many as nine early on. A 14-2 run by the Foresters gave them a three-point lead but the Duhawks responded with a 9-2 run to regain the advantage. Lake Forest faced a six-point deficit with four minutes to play in the half before outscoring Loras 14-4 to take a 43-39 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Both teams connected on more than 60 percent of the field goal attempts in the game's final 20 minutes. The visitors went on a 12-3 run early in the half to pull ahead by seven and they led by the same amount at 68-61 with less than nine minutes remaining. Baskets by Moran and Sotos trimmed the margin to just two points on five separate occasions and Brown's three-pointer from the left corner made it a two-point game once again with 1:48 remaining. Brown was fouled with 49.3 seconds on the clock and made one of two free throws to pull his team to within a point at 82-81. The Foresters, however, did not score again and a pair of free throws by the Duhawks with seven seconds left helped secure their victory.
The Foresters will travel just north of the state line this weekend for the Carthage College Classic in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Lake Forest's semifinal opponent Friday evening at 6:00 will by Great Lakes Christian College. Carthage will host Rockford University in the other semifinal with the losers slated to play Saturday afternoon at 2:00 and the winners in the tournament final at 4:00 p.m.