Hoosiers Stopped by Illinois, 51-43
Jan. 23, 2007
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The 23rd-ranked Indiana men's basketball team suffered its first loss in its last six games, falling on the road to Big Ten foe Illinois, 51-43. The Hoosiers fall to 14-5 (4-2 Big Ten) with the loss, while Illinois improves to 15-7 (3-4).
Reigning Big Ten Player of the Week D.J. White led the Hoosiers with 12 points and eight rebounds in the contest. The Hoosiers shot 39 percent (17-for-44) for the game, but hit just one of its final 11 shots of the opening half, after opening the game 7-for-10, as the Illini turned a seven-point deficit into a tie ballgame heading into the locker room. Rich McBride led all scorers with 15 points, while Shaun Pruitt turned in a double-double for the home squad with 10 points and 13 boards.
The Hoosiers jumped out to a 9-2 lead just 2:36 into the contest after hitting their first four shots from the field, with two of the baskets coming on jumpers by White. The junior scored seven of the Hoosiers first 12 points overall, and the visitors moved to an 18-11 lead on a 3-pointer by Earl Calloway with 12:19 to play.
The Indiana shooting went cold from the floor after that point, and the Hoosiers were held without a field goal until the final minute of the half. The IU defense held strong and kept Illinois without a field goal for nearly five minutes, but the Fighting Illini fought back to take a 23-21 lead with just over a minute to play in the half. A jumper by Mike White in the lane broke the string, and the Hoosiers and Illini entered the break deadlocked at 23-23.
The Illini came flying out of the locker room, scoring on each of their first three possessions to go on an 8-0 run and take a 31-23 lead. The final two blows came on 3s by Rich McBride, and Indiana head coach Kelvin Sampson took a timeout to quiet the Illinois crowd. Joey Shaw broke the string with his first points of the night at the 14:55 mark.
Indiana trimmed the lead to two points at 39-37 with 6:08 to play, but Illinois went on a 10-0 run to open up a decisive lead and walk away with the victory. It marked the fewest points for a Hoosier squad since a 61-42 loss to Minnesota on Jan. 29 of last season.
The Hoosiers will look to return to the win column on Saturday, Jan. 27, against Michigan on Branch McCracken Court. Game time is slated for noon EST and the contest will be televised live on ESPN.
Check back soon