February 03, 20241st2ndFinal
Stats at a GlanceEvansVALPO
FG Percentage.462 (24-52) .413 (26-63)
3P FG Percentage.250 (4-16) .381 (8-21)
FT Percentage.733 (11-15) .667 (2-3)
Offensive Rebounds56
Defensive Rebounds3123
Total Rebounds3629
Bench Points2114
PointsStrawbridge - 14
Schwieger - 22
ReboundsCuff - 8
Ajiboye - 7
AssistsStrawbridge - 3
DeAveiro - 6
StealsStrawbridge - 2
Edwards - 4
BlocksHughes - 2
Edwards - 2
Heartbreak Hits as Evansville Edges Valpo at ARC
Saturday, February 3, 2024
Heartbreak Hits as Evansville Edges Valpo at ARC
Cooper Schwieger had a game-high 22 points on Saturday.

For the second straight matchup between the Valparaiso University men’s basketball team and Evansville, the Beacons experienced heartbreak, this time falling 63-62 in a game that was hanging in the balance until the final horn sounded. Cooper Schwieger (Overland Park, Kan. / Blue Valley Southwest [Link Year] poured in a career-high 22 points, but the freshman’s effort was not enough in a game that featured 11 ties and 11 lead changes.

How It Happened

  • Valpo scored the game’s first five points including an early triple by Sherman Weatherspoon IV (Bowie, Md. / Bethesda-Chevy Chase [Golden State Prep]).  
  • Evansville went on a 7-0 run to erase an early 10-3 Valpo lead and tie the game at 10.
  • A dunk by Jaxon Edwards (Indianapolis, Ind. / Cathedral [Murray State]) lifted the Valpo lead back to four at 18-14 with 11:20 on the first-half clock. He recorded a rejection on the other end of the court to set up the slam.
  • The lead teetered back and forth with neither team owning an edge of more than one possession for the rest of the half. The Beacons went into the locker room with the upper hand thanks to a go-ahead 3-pointer by Schwieger in the final minute to make it 31-30.
  • The game was played within four points early in the second half, but the guests used an 8-0 run to snag a 46-40 lead with 14:03 on the clock as back-to-back 3s by Joshua Hughes prompted a timeout by head coach Roger Powell Jr.
  • Valpo got back within one on an Edwards 3-pointer, and eventually a basket by Edwards put the Beacons ahead 49-48 with 9:46 remaining. Evansville grabbed the lead again, but it remained a tight battle. Isaiah Stafford (Bolingbrook, Ill. / Crispus Attucks [John A. Logan / Southern Indiana]) hit a game-tying 3 with 5:44 on the clock to make it 54-all.
  • The two teams continued to go back-and-forth, and Darius DeAveiro (Kanata, Ottawa, Canada / Orangeville Prep) hit a big-time 3 with 1:33 on the clock to tie the game at 61. Yacine Toumi of Evansville scored a go-ahead basket with 1:09 to go, then Valpo got a key stop in the closing seconds to keep it a two-point game.
  • After a timeout by Valpo with nine seconds to go in regulation, Valpo drew a foul going to the basket and created a chance to send the game to overtime. The first shot was made but the second was missed as the Aces escaped the ARC with a one-point win.

Inside the Game

  • Schwieger reached 20 points for the third time this season including twice in the last four games. He went 9-of-16 from the field and 3-of-5 from 3-point territory. His 22 points shattered his previous career high of 21 set at Elon.
  • Stafford finished with 15 points, his eighth straight double-figure scoring output.
  • Edwards was the third Beacon in double figures with 10 points on 4-of-10 shooting including 2-of-3 from 3. He also swiped four steals and blocked two shots. This marked his first double-figure scoring output in the last eight games and his seventh of the season.
  • The team leader in rebounds was Ola Ajiboye (Chicago, Ill. / Evanston Township [Central Michigan / Bosco Institute]) with seven, while DeAveiro dished out six assists against one turnover.
  • Valpo attempted just three free throws, while Evansville got to the line on 15 occasions.
  • This was Valpo’s fifth loss decided by four points or fewer and the team’s second loss by the slimmest of margins. The Beacons fell by the identical score of 63-62 on Dec. 16 vs. Chicago State.
  • Valpo has dropped 10 straight games decided by four points or fewer with their most recent win by four points or fewer coming on Nov. 27, 2022 vs. James Madison.

Up Next

The Beacons (6-17, 2-10 MVC) will be on the road this week for an instate matchup with Indiana State on Wednesday night at 6 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on ESPN+.