Illinois State vs Louisville

No. 5 Louisville edges Illinois State wire reports

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Without its shot-blocking center, Louisville got big efforts from its backcourt and a seldom-used backup to escape a Saturday scare from Illinois State.

Guards Russ Smith and Peyton Siva traded turns taking over in the second-half of the No. 5 Cardinals 69-66 comeback win. Stephan Van Treese sparked Louisville in the middle, playing 34 minutes off the bench in place Gorgui Dieng who is out with a broken left wrist.

More on Louisville-Illinois State
Related links

Smith had 14 points of his 24 points in the second half while Siva 15 of his 20 after the break to help the Cardinals overcame an eight-point halftime deficit.

"We were eventually going to make a run," Smith said. "We just picked up our energy and effort. They are a great team."

Down 3 with a chance to tie, Illinois State's Tyler Brown airballed a 3-pointer with eight seconds left that was saved by Bryant Allen to Jackie Carmichael. Carmichael found Brown for another chance to force OT, drawing considerable contact from Louisville's Chane Behanan as the buzzer sounded. Louisville (6-1) claimed the win with the shot awry and no foul called.

Up 67-66 with 43 seconds left, Behanan missed two free throws but made amends on the next defensive possession, pinning a Carmichael shot on the glass and grabbing the rebound. That set up Siva for two free throws for the game's final margin.

Illinois State (5-2) led 61-60 with 4:25 to play after being up nearly the entire first half. Brown led all scorers with 25 points. Carmichael added 20 and nine rebounds.

Louisville coach Rick Pitino said he didn't think Behanan fouled on the game's final shot, saying Brown leaned into contact.

Brown called it a questionable decision but said the Redbirds, who shot 52 percent from the floor, had other chances for a signature win.

"We shouldn't have been in the situation where it came down to a last call like that," the senior guard from Owensboro, Ky. said. It was Brown's second straight big performance after scoring a career-high 36 in the Redbirds' 72-69 overtime loss to Northwestern on Nov. 24.

Playing their second game without Dieng, Louisville started flat and trailed by 13 more than eight minutes in before its backcourt and defense rallied.

"They outplayed us," Pitino said. "We played really hard [but] they had answers to everything that we put at them."

Van Treese, who was averaging just under 11 minutes a game before Saturday, provided much-needed energy to go with his eight rebounds and six points.

"Stephan's a warrior," Pitino said.

Louisville trailed for all but the first 39 seconds of the first half, enduring a scoring drought of more than seven minutes after Behanan's opening basket, and went into the break down 33-25. Brown and Carmichael combined for 27 in the first half, outscoring Louisville in the opening 20 minutes.

The Cardinals took just their second lead at 37-35 with 16:37 left since scoring the game's first basket but Illinois State continued to battle in the second half.

In the locker room at half, Pitino told his team to expect a close game, even if they rallied.

"Even if we take the lead, this is going down to the wire," he said. "We knew it would."

Siva -- the Big East preseason player of the year -- went to the bench with his fourth foul with 13:09 to play. Smith then carried the Louisville offense with his backcourt partner out, driving to the basket and drawing fouls. He hit six of eight free throws in a three-minute stretch, the last cutting the Illinois State lead to 55-51 with 10:03 to play.

Siva returned with 9:07 left, Illinois State up 57-51. Smith's steal from Johnny Hill and layup 21 seconds later was Louisville's first field goal in nearly four minutes. Luke Hancock immediately drew a charge on Hill on the next possession and Siva's 3-pointer off an inbounds play with 8:33 remaining cut the lead to one.

Behanan, who finished with 15 points and nine rebounds, hit an elbow jumper at the 6:08 mark to give Louisville its first lead in more than 10 minutes at 60-59. Johnny Wilkins' answered with 4:25 left for the Redbirds' last lead at 61-60 before Siva hit his final three of the game from the right elbow put Louisville up for good nine seconds later.

"Siva got really hot there and made some shots and that hurt us," first-year Illinois State coach Dan Muller said. "I am very proud of my team but very disappointed in how it ended. We don't come for moral victories."

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Russ Smith muscles his way to a team-high 24 points to help put Louisville past Illinois State. (US Presswire)
Russ Smith muscles his way to a team-high 24 points to help put Louisville past Illinois State. (US Presswire)
Illinois State (5-2)333366
Louisville #5 (6-1) «254469
ILLST:T. Brown 25 Pts
ILLST:J. Carmichael 9 Reb
ILLST:J. Hill 6 Ast
LVILLE:R. Smith 24 Pts
LVILLE:C. Behanan 9 Reb
LVILLE:L. Hancock 4 Ast

Related Video


CBSSports Shop

Men's Nike White Villanova Wildcats 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt

Villanova Wildcats 2016 National Champs
Get the Locker Room Gear!
Shop Now

Illinois StateLouisville
Tyler Brown
Russ Smith
Illinois State Redbirds
J. Carmichael, F348-134-591320
T. Brown, G328-166-650125
B. Allen, G303-60-02017
J. Ekey, F280-30-06140
J. Hill, G274-50-02638
N. Zeisloft, G191-30-02213
J. Wilkins, G-F151-21-31153
A. Cousin, G120-00-02210
J. Threloff, C30-00-00010
Z. Upshaw, GDid Not Play
G. Allen, GDid Not Play
J. Jones, FDid Not Play
K. Keane, GDid Not Play
Totals 25-4811-1429132066
Louisville Cardinals
R. Smith, G356-1711-1403224
P. Siva, G307-132-314420
C. Behanan, F267-81-790315
W. Blackshear, G-F120-30-03020
Z. Price, C60-00-00000
S. Van Treese, F343-30-08126
L. Hancock, F280-40-05420
K. Ware, G150-40-02030
M. Harrell, F142-30-13114
M. Marra, GDid Not Play
G. Dieng, CDid Not Play
T. Henderson, GDid Not Play
A. Nunez, FDid Not Play
M. Baffour, GDid Not Play
L. Baumann, GDid Not Play
M. Mathiang, CDid Not Play
J. Bond, GDid Not Play
Totals 25-5514-2532131969
Missouri Valley
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Wichita St.17-131-532
Illinois St.17-128-733
So. Illinois9-917-16145
N. Iowa9-914-16162
Missouri St.7-1117-16209
Indiana St.5-1311-20233

TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
N. Carolina14-433-75
Florida St.12-626-914
Notre Dame12-626-1023
Va. Tech10-822-1148
Miami (Fla.)10-821-1242
Wake Forest9-919-1439
Georgia Tech8-1021-16106
NC State4-1415-17141
Boston College2-169-23219
Other games
NICS 39 Final
BAYL 64 Final
UK 55
OKST 71 Final
VT 81
NFLA 59 Final
DEL 50 Final
NMEX 77 Final
APP 56 Final
BAMA 56 Final
STJOE 51 Final
MICH 74 Final
NKY 43 Final
UAB 84 Final
UNC 102
HAW 63 Final
COPS 51 Final
IND 87
ARIZ 85 Final
UOP 67 Final
COLO 69 Final
WYO 76
SDSU 78 Final