The Underdog Story Everyone Expected

Joe Auer, Writer

Charlie Tierney willed the Loyola Ramblers to a win over St. Ignatius in the Jesuit Cup.

After a devastating loss last year, losing to St. Ignatius was not an option for the Ramblers basketball team. The final was 46-41, with the teams fighting back and forth the entire time.

Senior point guard Alex Engro led the Ramblers with 12 points to go along with 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals. Surprisingly, none of these are Engro’s most impressive stat of the night. It was the fact he never subbed out the entire game.

In years prior, the Jesuit Cup has been played at a nearby college, such as Loyola Chicago, UIC, or Northwestern. This year it was played at Loyola Academy, causing no difficulty for the fans to fill up the gym. An impressive showing from the Loyola student body pushed the Ramblers to victory.

The win would not have been possible without Charlie Tierney’s efforts coming off the bench. The senior guard made sure his presence was felt as he hit a three to go along with drawing an offensive foul on Ignatius, all within the first minute he was in.

This performance came to no one’s surprise on the Ramblers’ side as senior manager Koffi Abini described Tierney’s week of practice as “magnificent” and “beast.” He went on to say, “You could really see it all clicking during practice, hitting shots, making the right play, hustling on defense, it felt like Charlie was everywhere.”

Senior guard Oliver Bishop said he made sure he “got his” too, scoring 6 points and dishing out 4 assists. Bishop is the leader of the Rambler defense and made sure everyone was in check. Bishop said, “You could really all see it coming together in the days leading up to the game.”

It seemed as if the Ramblers were given months to prepare for this game the way they all knew their assignments. They understood the St. Ignatius Wolfpack offense to a tee. The truth is the Ramblers were coming off a short week, playing St. Laurence only three days prior.

Senior student Brady Moffitt said, “Whenever I saw these guys they were watching film on the Wolfpack, you would’ve thought this game meant life or death.”

All of this being said, the Wolfpack still put up a great fight. Led by George Mason commit Richard Barron, St. Ignatius never found themselves out of the game. Barron doesn’t have a hard time putting the ball into the basket as he reached 1000 career points during the game. 5-star defensive lineman Justin Scott made sure his presence was felt on the interior.

The Ramblers are now making a strong push for the Chicago Catholic League Championship.

“Yeah, winning the Jesuit Cup was sweet, but we have bigger aspirations,” said junior guard Ethan Dabu.

Everyone should stay on the lookout for Loyola as they will creep into the Top 25 rankings, and continue their way through a schedule filled with formidable opponents.