CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) -- Brian Randle scored 16 points, grabbed
six rebounds and handed out six assists in his best effort so far
this season in leading Illinois to a 74-70 victory over Iowa on
Randle missed nine games following surgery to repair a groin
injury he aggravated while dunking in the Illini's season opener.
Illinois (13-5, 1-2 Big Ten) built an 11-point advantage in the
first 10 minutes, leading the Hawkeyes 16-5 with 10:43 to play in
the first half. Iowa then went on a 12-3 run over a 4:35 span to
narrow Illinois' lead to 21-19.
The teams traded shots until shortly before the break, when
Justin Johnson sunk a three-pointer with three seconds left to give
Iowa (9-7, 1-1) a 31-29 advantage.
Illinois and Iowa matched shots for the first six minutes of the
second half, but Jamar Smith made a pair of free throws and Rich
McBride sank a three-pointer to give Illinois a 46-45 lead and a
momentum boost. Illinois' forwards scored 16 of Illinois' next 17
points, including a string of three dunks to seal the lead at 65-52
with 5:32 to go.
Iowa eventually made it a 1-point game as Adam Haluska made a
three to make the score 71-70 Illinois with 32 seconds to go. But
Trent Meacham made a pair of free throws for Illinois and Randle
added one more as Iowa tried to stop the clock with 18.3 seconds
left. But Randle's free throw would be the last score.
Haluska led all scorers with 25 points, including 12-of-13 from
the free-throw line. Tyler Smith scored 12 points for the Hawkeyes
and Justin Johnson added 11.