Morning Box Score: College Hoops
By Marcus Gilmer in News on Dec 31, 2009 4:00PM
Illini Top Northwestern
Illinois toppled Northwestern 89-83 in overtime last night, snapping a two-game losing streak and handing Northwestern a loss in their first game as a top 25 team after a 40+ year absence from the polls. The Illini trailed by nine at the half but a big run to open the second half put them in a back-and-forth game with the Wildcats and forced overtime. The teams continued the close battle until Illinois sank five of seven free throws in the final minute of play to clinch the game. John Shurna led the Wildcats with 27 points but Mike Tisdale's 31 point, 11 rebound performance - with 20 more points from Mike Davis - paced the Illini to the big win. The two teams square off again January 23.
Notre Dame Cruises Past Providence
The Fighting Irish jumped out to a big first half lead over Providence and then held off a run by the Friars in the second half for a 93-78 victory. Jonathan Peoples came off the bench to lead the Irish with 23 points, Tim Abromaitis scored 22, and Luke Harangody had another strong performance putting up 19 points and pulling down 13 rebounds.
Temple Outlasts NIU
NIU kept it close against No. 19 Temple, but the Owls wouldn't be caught looking ahead to their big impending match-up with No. 1 Kansas, upending the Huskies 70-60. Xavier Silas led the Huskies with 26 points while Jake Anderson added 15 points and 7 rebounds in the losing effort.