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Illinois vs Minnesota

Nunn helps Illinois shoot down Minnesota, 62-49

By ANDY YBARRA
Associated Press
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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Freshman guard Kendrick Nunn hit five 3-pointers and led Illinois with 19 points as the last-place Illini beat Minnesota 62-49 on Wednesday night, putting a damper on the Gophers' hopes for an at-large NCAA Tournament bid.

The Illini won for only the second time in their last 12 games thanks to some uncharacteristically good 3-point shooting and solid defense that helped them overcome a poor start. Nunn went 5-for-7 from 3-point range, and the Illini hit eight shots from behind the arc - their most so far in conference play.

Nnanna Egwu had 14 points and Tracy Abrams added 13 for Illinois (15-12, 4-10 Big Ten), which entered the game ranking next-to-last in the Big Ten in 3-point field goal percentage (.308).

Andre Hollins led Minnesota (17-10, 6-8) with 15 points, and Austin Hollins and Mo Walker each added 10. The Gophers have lost six of their last nine games.

Fresh off a road win at Northwestern over the weekend, the Gophers were in prime position to give their NCAA Tournament odds a boost facing the Big Ten's last-place team in front of their rowdy home fans. Instead, they struggled to hit shots and their defense allowed the Illini to overcome an early double-digit hole.

The Gophers jumped out to a 14-3 lead before DeAndre Mathieu - Minnesota's leading scorer in its previous seven games - was forced to sit with two early fouls. With the Gophers' floor leader on the bench, the Illini steadily climbed their way back into the game by hitting six of their nine first-half 3-point attempts. Mathieu finished with three points.

Illinois outscored the Gophers 21-13 over the final 11 minutes of the first half. Abrams' three with 2:13 left in the half brought the Illini to 24-23. Minnesota led 27-24 at halftime, but Illinois outscored Minnesota 22-8 to open the second half. Nunn had 10 points during that stretch, including back-to-back threes and a fast-break dunk that put Illinois ahead 46-35 with just under eight minutes to play.

Nunn scored 19 points for the second time this season, his first time coming Feb. 9 at Penn State. It was his second time scoring in double digits.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Illinois (15-12) «243862
Minnesota (17-10)272249

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Big Ten
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Penn St.0-012-138
Maryland0-011-130
Wisconsin0-011-19
Indiana0-010-291
Minnesota0-010-271
Ohio St.0-010-265
Illinois0-09-349
Iowa0-09-496
Michigan St.0-09-476
Nebraska0-08-4106
Northwestern0-08-4131
Purdue0-08-5149
Michigan0-07-5153
Rutgers0-07-5103
 
Other games
NW 60 Final
OHST 76
CIN 77 Final
UCF 49
AUB 66 Final
FLA 71
STL 89 Final
GMU 85
BC 62 Final
SYR 59
WICH 88 Final
LOYC 74
CREI 85 Final
MU 70
ARIZ 67 Final
UTAH 63
UCLA 86 Final
CAL 66