Recap: Illinois vs. Michigan

Champaign, IL ( - Kendrick Nunn scored a game-high 21 points as the Illinois Fighting Illini took down the Michigan Wolverines in overtime, 64-52, in a Big Ten Conference battle at the State Farm Center.


Ahmad Starks tacked on 12 points off the bench and Malcolm Hill 11, the latter shooting just 4-of-16 from the floor for the Illini (17-8, 7-5 Big Ten) as they picked up their fourth straight win and the fifth in the last six outings.


Rayvonte Rice, who has been dealing with a broken left hand, made his return to the floor for the first time since Jan. 3 versus Ohio State and tallied four points, five rebounds and three steals in 27 minutes off the bench for Illinois.


Michigan (13-12, 6-7) was paced by Spike Albrecht with 13 points and five assists, followed by Max Bielfeldt off the bench with 12 points and seven boards. Zak Irvin accounted for eight points and eight rebounds, but shot only 3-of-12 from the floor.


Both teams had trouble scoring in the first half as each side made a total of only nine field goals, but thanks to a 4-of-4 showing at the free-throw line the Wolverines were able to take a slim 22-20 advantage at the break. Michigan, which missed all five chances behind the 3-point line through the first 20 minutes, limited Illinois to 2-of-11 on the perimeter.


Trailing by as many as eight points in the second half, Illinois closed the gap down the stretch by putting on a 7-0 run to close out regulation.


The Illini knotted the score at 50-50 with 1:21 left in regulation with a 3- pointer from the left corner. The teams then traded empty possessions and after calling timeout with 15.7 seconds remaining, Michigan put the ball in play and was fouled three times before getting off a shot.


Illinois then picked off an inbound pass and was fouled with 3.4 seconds left. The Illini were forced to go the length of the floor and managed to get off a shot from just inside halfcourt, but the attempt missed to the right of the rim, sending the meeting into overtime.


The hosts then scored the first 14 points of the extra session and never looked back. The only points for Michigan in the period came at the free-throw line with just over 14 seconds remaining.


The Fighting Illini grabbed the win despite shooting only 38.7 percent from the field.


Michigan, which was held scoreless in the last overtime game versus Michigan State back on Feb. 1, won the first meeting of the campaign versus the Illini on Dec. 30, 2014 with a 73-65 overtime decision at home.



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