BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — James Blackmon Jr. scored 25 points, Thomas Bryant finished with 20 and No. 25 Indiana defeated Illinois, 96-80, on Saturday for its first Big Ten Conference win of the season.
Illinois was scoreless for the first 6 minutes of the game, during which time the Hoosiers (11-5, 1-2) jumped out to a 13-0 lead. Indiana led for the entire game, and was up by as many as 22 points. Illinois pulled within 10 points of the Hoosiers with less than 5 minutes remaining in the game, but Indiana stretched its lead one final time.
Robert Johnson finished with 18 points for Indiana and OG Anunoby had 12 points.
Jalen Coleman-Lands and Malcolm Hill scored 21 points each and Maverick Morgan finished with 18 for Illinois (11-5, 1-2).
The Illini finished the first half shooting 29 percent from the field (7 of 24) and finished the game at 44 percent (24 of 54).
The Hoosiers made seven of 13 3-point attempts in the first half. Indiana’s offensive onslaught was a product of a balanced offense as 22 of the Hoosiers’ 29 field goals came by way of an assist.
BIG PICTURE: After getting their first Big Ten win in front of their home crowd at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall, the Hoosiers will hit the road for four of their remaining six conference games in the month of January (Maryland, Penn State, Michigan, Northwestern).
POLL IMPLICATIONS: After being ranked as high as No. 3 this season, the Hoosiers found themselves on the verge of being unranked, falling to No. 25 after losing four of their last six games. Saturday’s win should give Indiana a much needed bump in rankings.
Illinois: Hosts Michigan on Wednesday
Indiana: Travels to Maryland on Tuesday
(© 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.)