Colorado came out of halftime and dominated Illinois for 11 minutes, outscoring the Illini 23-2, and lost. In a game of streaks, Illinois won the final seven minutes of the first half 13-0, and responded to Colorado’s run with a 16-2 run that left the game all but over at 55-46 with seconds to play en route to a 57-49 win. A steal and three-pointer by DJ Richardson (pictured) spurred Illinois.
Tracy Adams rescued the Illini when it looked bleak. He drove for the lay-up that ended Colorado’s 23-2 run and get Illinois back within 44-41 with 8:36 to play. Then in a 23-second period he teamed up with DJ Richardson to put Illinois on top for good.
Adams drew three defenders then kicked a pass to Richardson, who drilled a three-pointer to put Illinois back on top 45-44. Richardson then stole the ball, passed it to Adams, and Adams set up Brandon Paul for anther three-pointer to make it 48-44 with 6:16 to play and Colorado would never lead again.
Colorado did hit a field goal with 5:51 to play to get back within 48-46, and then both teams turned up the defense and no more field goals were scored from that 5:51 mark until the final 18 seconds of the game.
During those five minutes, Paul scrapped for one loose ball after another and hit six consecutive free throws, and Nnanna Egwu hit one of two to stretch the lead to 55-46.