Wcarolina 64
Illinois 72
Date of game: 12/4/2012

Recap: Illinois vs. Western Carolina

Champaign, IL (Sports Network) - D.J. Richardson scored 13 points and keyed a late Illinois run with a pair of 3-pointers, as the 13th-ranked Fighting Illini edged upset-minded Western Carolina, 72-64, at Assembly Hall.

Illinois (9-0), perhaps looking ahead to a meeting with No. 10 Gonzaga on Saturday, needed a 12-2 run in the final stages to put away the Catamounts, who were trying for their first-ever win against a ranked opponent.

Brandon Paul needed 15 shots to total 14 points, while Tracy Abrams added 10 points for the Illini, who shot just 7-of-24 from the perimeter.

"One area where we did get it done is we were able to win the game because we were able to make big plays," Illinois coach John Groce said.

Preston Ross and Brandon Boggs netted 17 and 16 points, respectively, for Western Carolina (3-6), which is 0-37 all-time against top-25 foes.

"I like Illinois' team," Western Carolina coach Larry Hunter said. "They've got a lot of good pieces to the puzzle."

The Catamounts never led, thanks in part to shooting 27 percent from the floor and committing 14 turnovers in the first half. They trailed, 32-22, at the break, but got hot and pulled even when Ross converted a three-point play for a 40-40 deadlock 6 1/2 minutes into the second half.

Eleven minutes later, Nnanna Egwu broke a tie game with a dunk, sparking Illinois' clinching flurry. Richardson hit from long range on consecutive possessions, and Abrams sank a fadeaway for a 66-56 cushion with 2:24 on the clock.

The closest the visitors got from there was six.

A Richardson 3-pointer midway through the opening half gave Illinois a 17-7 lead, and it remained a 10-point margin at the intermission.

Game Notes

Illinois owns a 20-game non-conference home winning streak ... The Illini scored 20 more points in the paint, 34-14 ... Illinois scored 29 points off 22 turnovers ... Western Carolina is 1-14 all-time against current members of the Big Ten ... The Catamounts play will play just their second home game of the season on Saturday when they host Appalachian State.

NASCAR News
Smith replaces Larson for Martinsville race

Regan Smith substituted for Kyle Larson in the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet in Sunday's Sprint Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway after Larson was sidelined due to additional medical tests following his fainting spell on Saturday.

Extra Points: Snyder and the Beltway radio wars

If contradiction was an Olympic sport, Chip Kelly would certainly be medal-worthy judging by his performance at the NFL's owners meeting but the Eagles coach might have to settle for silver because Daniel Snyder's critics will take the gold every time.

2015 PREVIEW NL EAST: It's the Nationals and everybody else

There isn't much after that. The Miami Marlins are loaded up for a playoff push -- likely through a wild card spot -- and the New York Mets are up-and- coming but still raw. The Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies, former powerhouses of the division, are going through rebuilds and won't contend anytime soon.

Stay Connected with WDEF News 12
 
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.