After storming out to a 7-0 lead and stretching the lead to as much as 10 at 42-32 behind a Jake Barnett three-pointer, the Billikens hit a rough patch and the Flyers turned on the jets. Over the next six minutes, UD went on a 36-17 run to seize control of the game up 68-59 with just 3:36 remaining.
SLU's final chance, a three-point look from Barnett touched the front of the rim but didn't fall.
"Our kids kept fighting," SLU head coach Jim Crews said. "They didn't panic. Our guys executed a play and got a great look. It just didn't go down."
The main difficulties for the Billikens were at the free-throw line and behind the three-point arc. SLU shot just 21-for-31 (67 percent) from the charity stripe, and six-for-22 from deep (27 percent). A poor eight-for-15 performance from the line in the second half doomed the Bills as UD countered with an 11-for-11 mark.
On Senior Night, five senior starters simply came up one play short.
"There's been a lot of water over the dam with things off and on the floor," SLU head coach Jim Crews said. "I'm so proud of what they've done in their careers."
The Flyers outscored the Billikens 31-14 off the bench, which illustrates a lack of depth on the SLU roster from an offensive perspective.
"Dayton outplayed us," he said. "We're disappointed. . .but these guys have won back-to-back championships."
Despite the loss, though, it wasn't all negative. By merit of St. Joseph's loss to George Washington, Saint Louis wrapped up the top seed in the Atlantic 10 Tournament in Brooklyn and at least a share of the A-10 regular season title for the second straight year.
"They're ambassadors for the school," Crews said following the loss. "They have been absolutely tremendous. Not only on the basketball for. Winning a championship, we have plenty of basketball left. . . It's been absolutely mind-boggling to me how consistent they've been over the three years."
"Not the way we wanted to get to that point," senior Dwayne Evans said. "We didn't play well enough to win."
Having lost three straight games after a 25-2 start to the season, SLU is now looking poised for a seed-line drop to a 6 or 7 mark.
Jordan Sibert led the way for the Flyers with 14 points.