CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — Ayo Dosunmu scored 24 points, five others scored in double digits and Illinois rolled over Division-II Lindenwood 117-65 Tuesday.
Illinois (6-1) shot 39 of 63 from the field for 62%, the second game in a row the Illini have shot 60% or better.
“I was concerned with (Lindenwood) coming in here,” Illinois coach Brad Underwood said. “It was a challenge preparing for them because there are literally five guards out there, and they shoot very well from the perimeter.”
Illinois broke a school record with 237 combined points against Lindenwood and Hampton in its last two games. The Illini scored 229 points back-to-back in 1993 against American University and Chicago State.
Da’Monte Williams scored a career-high 18 points, Trent Frazier scored 17, Andres Feliz 16, Kofi Cockburn 12 points with eight rebounds, and Giorgi Bezhanishvili added 10 points for Illinois.
“Da’Monte is a great player,” Dosunmu said. “I see him in the gym every day. He puts the work in.”
Underwood also had praise for Frazier, who scored only three points against Hampton on Saturday. “What a game tonight for Trent, huh? He got going offensively after having a great game defensively a couple days ago.”
Cockburn just missed his sixth NCAA-leading double-double of the young season, due mostly to playing 22 minutes in the blowout.
Lindenwood was led by T.J. Crockett’s 24 points. Vijay Blackmon scored 12 and Cameron Scales added 11 for the Lions.
The Lions were 25 of 64 from the field for 39% shooting.
“Defense is one of our biggest focuses right now,” Frazier said, “It doesn’t matter what team we are facing.”
After a slow start in which they trailed 8-2 with 17:46 to play in the first, the Illini unleased a 21-0 run to take a 23-8 lead, sparked by back-to-back 3-pointers from Frazier.
“We’re just getting better and better each game” Dosunmu said.
Illinois led 66-29 at the half.
“It’s nice to see that winning attitude,” Underwood said. “I like the connectivity of our team right now. We are becoming a well-rounded team that’s very connected to one another.”
HE SAID IT
“Coach always says it’s the little things that win games,” Williams said. “So I go out there and do the little things.”
Three things helped spark Illinois’ run early in the game. Frazier hit two from beyond the 3-point line back-to-back, Feliz whipped a behind-the-back pass to Kipper Nichols for an easy layup, and a monster dunk by Cockburn rattled the backboard and brought the crowd to its feet.
Lindenwood: The Lions were outgunned and outplayed by the taller, more athletic Illini. Kudos, however, to coach Kyle Gerdeman’s team for hanging around as long as they did.
Illinois: The Illini took care of business in preparation for a much tougher schedule starting next week against Miami.
Lindenwood: Hosts Missouri-St. Louis Dec. 3.
Illinois: Hosts Miami in the fifth of a five-game home stand. The Illini play four of the next five at home and five of the next seven to close out 2019.
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