Freshman guard Milton Doyle buried a 3-pointer at the buzzer, giving Loyola (Chicago) a 74-72 win over Bradley in a first-round Missouri Valley Conference tournament game Thursday at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis.
The 10th-seeded Ramblers lost two regular-season games to the seventh-seeded Braves by a combined 26 points, but they avenged those defeats in their first MVC tournament game. Loyola joined the conference last summer.
Loyola advances to play second-seeded Indiana State on Friday night in the second round. The Sycamores won both regular-season meetings against the Ramblers, prevailing by 12 points at home and by four at Loyola.
The Ramblers led the entire second half until Bradley senior forward Tyshon Pickett converted two free throws with 34 seconds to play to give the Braves a 70-69 lead. It was Bradley’s first lead since the 10-minute mark of the first half.
Doyle answered by making two free throws with 11 seconds to play, but senior guard Walt Lemon Jr. gave the Braves the lead back by sinking two foul shots with 4.8 seconds left.
Loyola inbounded the ball from its own end, and Doyle got the ball just after crossing the mid-court stripe. He dribbled toward the basket before launching the game-winning shot from well beyond the 3-point arc.
Doyle led the Ramblers with 19 points, while sophomore guards Jeff White and Devon Turk each finished with 14 points.
Pickett led the Braves with a game-high 25 points, and Lemon added 24.
Both teams shot well from the floor, Bradley hitting 55.6 percent of its shot, Loyola making 52.2 percent.
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