Illinois blows past Purdue
Champaign, IL (Sports Network) – Rich McBride scored 19 points on 6-of-10
shooting and 3-of-6 beyond the arc to lead eighth-ranked Illinois to a 76-58
win over Purdue at Assembly Hall.
The Illini extended their home winning streak to 33 games, tying Southern
Illinois and Gonzaga for the longest current mark in the NCAA. The last team
to defeat the Fighting Illini at Assembly Hall was Purdue in a 58-54 win
on January 10, 2004.
Dee Brown posted 12 points and nine assists, while James Augustine notched 11
points and 12 rebounds for Illinois (19-2, 5-2 Big Ten), which is 12-0 at home
Gary Ware and Marcus Green scored 11 points apiece to pace Purdue (7-12, 1-7
Big Ten), which lost its fourth straight and is 0-5 in conference road games.
Bryant Dillon scored 10 points and Matt Kiefer added 10 rebounds in the loss.
Purdue shot out early with a 7-0 run to start the game. A 24-5 first-half
Illinois spurt remained insurmountable for the Boilermakers, however, who
never regained their early lead.
With Purdue clinging to a 15-6 advantage, Jamar Smith drilled a three-pointer
that sparked a 14-0 run for the Illini.
After Brown scored two straight layups, McBride drained a three-pointer
assisted by Brown at the 9:19 mark to give the Illini an 18-15 lead. Brown
netted another layup six seconds before the halftime buzzer to give Illinois a
35-27 lead at halftime.
Brown broke the game wide open in the second half. He split two Purdue
defenders for a swooping finger roll, assisted Brian Randle on an alley-oop
dunk, fed McBride for a three, and kept it himself for a whirling layup – all
consecutively within a span of one minute during a big run over a 13-minute
stretch. Brown’s stellar performance was part of a 17-3 run that gave Illinois
a 56-37 lead at the 13-minute mark.
Illinois has won 58 of its last 61 games during the regular season. The Illini
are 90-3 at the Assembly Hall over the last 6 1/2 seasons, the best home mark
in the nation over this time period.
This was the 166th meeting between the two schools and Purdue owns an 85-81
advantage…Purdue is 30-53 against Illinois in Champaign…The Illini won
four in a row in the series and eight of the last 11 meetings. They won the
last meeting 84-50 in Champaign on March 3, 2005…Illinois does not play at
West Lafayette this season.