November 29, 20231st2ndFinal
Stats at a GlanceDRAVALPO
FG Percentage.500 (29-58) .407 (24-59)
3P FG Percentage.261 (6-23) .409 (9-22)
FT Percentage.731 (19-26) .471 (8-17)
Offensive Rebounds810
Defensive Rebounds3125
Total Rebounds3935
Bench Points217
PointsBrodie - 21
Stafford - 20
ReboundsBrodie - 9
Edwards - 7
Stafford - 7
AssistsGibson - 3
Enright - 3
Brodie - 3
DeAveiro - 5
StealsOverton - 1
Garland - 1
Enright - 1
Ferguson - 1
Brodie - 1
Stafford - 3
BlocksBrodie - 2
Edwards - 1
Stafford - 1
Valpo Drops MVC Opener to Preseason Favorite Drake
Wednesday, November 29, 2023
Valpo Drops MVC Opener to Preseason Favorite Drake

The Valparaiso University men’s basketball team led for much of the first half, but preseason Missouri Valley Conference favorite and defending league champion Drake utilized a strong second half to beat the Beacons 83-65 in the league opener for both teams, a game that was closer than the final score would indicate. Isaiah Stafford (Bolingbrook, Ill. / Crispus Attucks [John A. Logan / Southern Indiana]) paced the Brown & Gold with 20 points.

How It Happened

  • Valpo grabbed an early lead thanks to a 9-0 run that turned a 4-4 stalemate into a 13-4 edge with 13:05 left in the half. A second-chance dunk by Cooper Schwieger (Overland Park, Kan. / Blue Valley Southwest [Link Year]) and a made 3-pointer by Jaxon Edwards (Indianapolis, Ind. / Cathedral [Murray State]) highlighted the early run.
  • The Bulldogs clawed back, but quickly the Beacons had the cushion back up to nine when Darius DeAveiro (Kanata, Ottawa, Canada / Orangeville Prep) knocked down a trey at the 11:06 mark.
  • Following the DeAveiro swish, Drake rattled off seven straight points to shrink the gap to two.
  • Valpo scored six straight on back-to-back triples by Stafford, building the edge back to eight at 26-18 with 5:28 on the clock.
  • Drake scored six in a row to get within one with 4:25 left in the half. The Bulldogs took their first lead since the game’s early stages at 31-30 with 2:07 on the first-half clock. DeAveiro hit another 3 to wrestle the lead back.
  • Stafford connected from long range to tie it with 39 seconds left in the half, and Drake made a free throw going into the break to hold a 37-36 edge.
  • The lead seesawed early in the second half with Schwieger making a go-ahead layup at the 16:10 mark to make it 47-46. DeAveiro drained his third 3 of the game with 13:55 on the clock to again vault the Beacons ahead 50-48.
  • After DeAveiro’s triple, the Bulldogs scored 10 straight points to take a 58-50 lead with 11:00 to play. The lead reached double figures at the midway mark of the half and Valpo could not fully climb back into the game down the final stretch.

Inside the Game

  • Stafford poured in 20 points to pace the Beacons, while Schwieger added 13 and DeAveiro contributed 11.
  • Stafford and DeAveiro drained three 3s apiece. For comparison, DeAveiro made three 3s all of last season in 25 games. He entered this season with seven career made 3s over 54 games and has five 3s in the first seven contests this year.
  • DeAveiro had five assists while tying a career high with 11 points. He has scored eight points or more in each of his last three games, including his previous best of 11 on Nov. 21 vs. Western Illinois.
  • Edwards chipped in eight points to go along with seven rebounds, sharing the lead on the boards with Stafford, who also swiped three steals.
  • Free-throw shooting played a key role in the final margin. Valpo went just 8-of-17 (47.1 percent) at the stripe, while Drake was 19-of-26 (73.1 percent). Foul trouble plagued the Beacons as Edwards, Schwieger and Ola Ajiboye (Chicago, Ill. / Evanston Township [Central Michigan / Bosco Institute]) were tagged with four fouls apiece.
  • Drake was held to just 26.1 percent from 3-point territory, missing 17 of its 23 attempts.

Postgame Press Conference

Click here for postgame press conference.

Up Next

The Beacons (4-3, 0-1 MVC) will continue the opening week of MVC play on Saturday at Belmont for a 1 p.m. tip in Nashville, Tenn. The game will be broadcast on ESPN+.