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Jordan scores 19 as Illinois rolls over Evansville 99-60

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) Aaron Jordan scored 19 points and Ayo Dosunmu added 18 as Illinois beat Evansville 99-60 in the season opener for both teams Thursday night.

The Illini played an up-tempo game utilizing nearly every player on the bench. The Aces turned the ball over 25 times, leading to 32 Illini points.

''They were very physical,'' said Evansville coach Walter McCarty. ''But 25 turnovers? You can't win games with numbers like that.''

Andres Feliz and Kipper Nichols added 16 and 13 points respectively for the Illini. Freshman center Giorgi Bezhanishvili grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.

K. J. Riley led the Aces with 14 points. Marty Hill scored 13 points and Shea Feehan added 12 for Evansville.

''There were a lot of things to like tonight,'' said Illinois coach Brad Underwood. ''I was really pleased we had 22 assists. We are capable of that every night. This is a very athletic and unselfish team.''

Illinois was in charge from the opening tip, going on runs of 10-0, 13-0 and 16-1 to lead 53-22 at the break. The Aces turned the ball over 15 times in the first half, leading to 18 Illini points.

Illinois showed a lot of speed and athleticism, and seemingly wore out the Aces by the end of the game.

''We allowed them to get out into transitions a lot off turnovers, and they were very fast,'' McCarty said. ''Our turnovers allowed them to take advantage throughout the whole game, although I thought we were a bit more composed the second half.''

Underwood said his team purposefully slowed the pace in the second half. ''We did slow it down some, simply because of the score.''

Jordan, who was 5 of 8 from the 3-point line, gave credit to his teammates.

''They found me and I took the shots. I love these guys, and I love this team,'' he said. ''We really played fast tonight, faster than I've seen us play. We just grabbed rebounds and we were gone down the court.''

Illinois is 34-2 when starting the season at State Farm Center, including an active streak of 22 straight wins.

BIG PICTURE

Evansville: It was the first time the Aces have played Illinois but they are 15-35 against other Big Ten members.

Illinois: All eyes were on the young Illinois team as coach Brad Underwood starts his second season after going 14-18 overall and 4-14 in the Big Ten last year. Two players expected to make an impact this year, guard Alan Griffin and 7-foot center Samba Kane, didn't play Thursday. Griffin tweaked a knee in practice, while Kane violated an undetermined team rule and was held out. Underwood said both players will be available for the next game.

TURNING POINT

Jordan hit two 3-pointers and scored eight points in less than a minute, sparking a 13-0 run that put the Illini up 35-14 with 8:09 to play in the first half.

ALL TALK

Bezhanishvili, a crowd favorite originally from the country of Georgia before moving to Austria and eventually to New Jersey, was called for a technical foul in the second half, which mystified many since he'd seemingly done nothing wrong.

''Well, I was talking a little too much to the referee,'' he said, smiling broadly. ''I do talk a lot, you know. I should not do that I guess.''

Jordan agreed. ''Giorgi is a personality kind of guy. He'll learn his boundaries eventually.''

HIGHLIGHT REEL

Illinois scored 22 of its 53 first-half points in the paint, including a spectacular cross-court pass from Nichols to Bezhanishvili for a rim-rattling dunk with 30 seconds left in the half that brought the crowd to its feet.

UP NEXT

Evansville: The Aces travel to Xavier on Saturday.

Illinois: The Illini host Georgetown on Tuesday.

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Key Players
Min. Per Game
Pts. Per Game
Ast. Per Game
Reb. Per Game
Field Goal %
Three Point %
Free Throw %
  Noah Frederking missed jump shot 33.0
+ 2 Tevian Jones made layup 45.0
  Defensive rebound by Drew Cayce 1:04
  K.J. Riley missed 2nd of 2 free throws 1:04
+ 1 K.J. Riley made 1st of 2 free throws 1:04
  Personal foul on Tevian Jones 1:04
  Bad pass turnover on Drew Cayce, stolen by Noah Frederking 1:19
+ 2 K.J. Riley made layup, assist by Shamar Givance 1:29
  Defensive rebound by Shamar Givance 1:36
  Drew Cayce missed 3-pt. jump shot 1:38
+ 1 Shamar Givance made 2nd of 2 free throws 2:00
Team Stats
Points 60 99
Field Goals 20-53 (37.7%) 40-71 (56.3%)
3-Pointers 6-24 (25.0%) 12-28 (42.9%)
Free Throws 14-22 (63.6%) 7-14 (50.0%)
Total Rebounds 31 40
Offensive 6 10
Defensive 20 28
Team 5 2
Assists 9 22
Steals 7 11
Blocks 0 4
Turnovers 24 14
Fouls 16 21
Technicals 1 1
14 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST
19 PTS, 7 REB
12T
away team logo Evansville 0-1 223860
home team logo Illinois 1-0 534699
Team Stats
away team logo Evansville 0-1 80.5 PPG 36.3 RPG 15.5 APG
home team logo Illinois 1-0 81.3 PPG 35.3 RPG 15.5 APG
Key Players
33
K. Riley G 14.3 PPG 4.8 RPG 3.3 APG 48.6 FG%
23
A. Jordan G 9.8 PPG 5.8 RPG 1.3 APG 39.4 FG%
Top Scorers
K. Riley G 14 PTS 2 REB 1 AST
A. Jordan G 19 PTS 7 REB 0 AST
37.7 FG% 56.3
25.0 3PT FG% 42.9
63.6 FT% 50.0
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
K. Riley 28 14 2 1 0 0 7 2 4/8 0/0 6/10 0 2
M. Hill 27 13 6 2 2 0 4 3 4/8 2/3 3/4 3 3
S. Feehan 28 12 2 0 2 0 4 3 4/8 1/5 3/4 1 1
J. Hall 31 7 4 0 1 0 2 0 3/7 1/3 0/2 0 4
E. Kuhlman 32 5 5 1 1 0 1 3 2/9 1/6 0/0 2 3
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
K. Riley 28 14 2 1 0 0 7 2 4/8 0/0 6/10 0 2
M. Hill 27 13 6 2 2 0 4 3 4/8 2/3 3/4 3 3
S. Feehan 28 12 2 0 2 0 4 3 4/8 1/5 3/4 1 1
J. Hall 31 7 4 0 1 0 2 0 3/7 1/3 0/2 0 4
E. Kuhlman 32 5 5 1 1 0 1 3 2/9 1/6 0/0 2 3
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
J. Newton 18 5 3 1 0 0 2 2 2/7 1/4 0/0 0 3
S. Givance 13 4 3 4 0 0 0 0 1/2 0/1 2/2 0 3
N. Frederking 20 0 1 0 1 0 4 3 0/4 0/2 0/0 0 1
J. Chestnut 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0
S. Cunliffe - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Labinowicz - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Chatkevicius - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Straub - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Williams - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 200 60 26 9 7 0 24 16 20/53 6/24 14/22 6 20
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
A. Jordan 27 19 7 0 2 0 2 1 7/12 5/8 0/0 1 6
A. Dosunmu 24 18 6 4 3 0 1 3 8/14 2/3 0/3 2 4
K. Nichols 24 13 2 2 0 1 0 1 5/7 1/2 2/4 0 2
T. Frazier 25 10 1 7 2 0 0 3 4/10 2/6 0/2 0 1
G. Bezhanishvili 22 7 10 2 0 1 3 2 3/5 1/1 0/0 5 5
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
A. Jordan 27 19 7 0 2 0 2 1 7/12 5/8 0/0 1 6
A. Dosunmu 24 18 6 4 3 0 1 3 8/14 2/3 0/3 2 4
K. Nichols 24 13 2 2 0 1 0 1 5/7 1/2 2/4 0 2
T. Frazier 25 10 1 7 2 0 0 3 4/10 2/6 0/2 0 1
G. Bezhanishvili 22 7 10 2 0 1 3 2 3/5 1/1 0/0 5 5
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB
A. Feliz 21 16 3 3 2 0 5 2 6/10 1/2 3/3 0 3
D. Williams 19 8 3 3 0 1 0 3 4/5 0/1 0/0 0 3
T. Jones 18 8 4 0 1 1 0 4 3/6 0/3 2/2 2 2
D. Cayce 4 0 1 0 0 0 2 1 0/1 0/1 0/0 0 1
T. Underwood 8 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0/1 0/1 0/0 0 1
S. Oladimeji 5 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0
Z. Griffith 5 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0
A. De La Rosa - - - - - - - - - - - - -
S. Kane - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Griffin - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Higgs - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 202 99 38 22 11 4 14 21 40/71 12/28 7/14 10 28