January 17, 2019 / 4:51 AM / 6 months ago

Dosunmu, Illinois cruise past Minnesota

Ayo Dosunmu scored 23 points on 9-for-13 shooting, and Illinois cruised to a 95-68 win over Minnesota on Wednesday night at Champaign, Ill.

Illinois (5-12, 1-5 Big Ten) snapped a five-game losing streak and celebrated a victory for the first time since Dec. 15 against East Tennessee State. The Fighting Illini posted their first Big Ten win since Feb. 25 at Rutgers.

Daniel Oturu led the Golden Gophers with 17 points and eight rebounds in a losing effort. Minnesota (13-4, 3-3) has dropped two of its past three games after opening the season with a 12-2 record.

Dosunmu showcased the promise that made him the Fighting Illini’s top recruit out of Chicago in the Class of 2018. The freshman guard hit 3 of 4 shots from beyond the arc and finished only two points shy of his career high of 25, which he set Nov. 13 against Georgetown.

Giorgi Bezhanishvili added 20 points on 8-for-12 shooting for Illinois. He pulled down eight rebounds, six of which came on the offensive glass.

Trent Frazier (15 points) and Andres Feliz (10) also scored in double figures for Illinois.

Besides Oturu, the only player to score in double figures for Minnesota was Jordan Murphy with 11 points. Murphy made 4 of 6 field-goal attempts and all three of his free-throw attempts.

The Fighting Illini shot 56.1 percent (37 of 66) from the field, while Minnesota shot 44.1 percent (26 of 59) overall. Illinois made eight 3-pointers, compared to only three for the Golden Gophers.

Illinois led 51-28 at halftime and built its lead to 30 points in the second half.

The Golden Gophers led 9-7 after a hook shot by Eric Curry with 16:16 left in the first half. But the Fighting Illini stormed back with a 28-8 run to pull ahead 35-17 with 7:20 to go in the half.

Dosunmu made a layup with 1 second remaining to secure the 23-point advantage before the break.

Illinois will visit No. 23 Iowa on Sunday afternoon in search of its second straight victory. Meanwhile, Minnesota will return home to host Penn State on Saturday night.

—Field Level Media

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