Junior forward Juwan Morgan had 14 points, 10 rebounds, five blocked shots and four steals to help Indiana record a 78-68 victory over Illinois on Wednesday in Big Ten play at Bloomington, Ind.
Freshman guard Aljami Durham and senior guard Robert Johnson also scored 14 points as part of a balanced attack that helped the Hoosiers (15-12, 8-7 Big Ten) win their third consecutive contest. Freshman forward Justin Smith tallied 13 points, senior guard Josh Newkirk scored 11 as Indiana improved to 12-5 this season at Assembly Hall.
Junior forward Leron Black had 20 points and seven rebounds before fouling out for Illinois (12-15, 2-12). Sophomore forward Kipper Nichols scored 16 points and freshman guard Trent Frazier added 12 points for the Fighting Illini, who have dropped four straight games and 10 of their last 12.
Illinois is 0-9 on the road this season.
Indiana shot 59.1 percent from the field and held a 34-23 rebounding edge but committed 18 turnovers. Illinois shot 40.7 percent from the field and made 12 miscues.
Illinois trailed by 10 points at the half but made a strong push over the first six minutes of the second half to trail 47-45 after Black’s 3-pointer.
A short time later, the Hoosiers went on an 8-2 run and took a 59-51 lead on Durham’s layup with 9:11 remaining. The lead later reached 67-57 when Newkirk made two free throws with 4:36 to play.
Illinois never trailed by fewer than seven the rest of the way.
Indiana used a 14-0 burst to open up a 12-point advantage en route to a 35-25 lead at the break.
The Illini led 14-12 on a layup by sophomore guard Te‘Jon Lucas with 12:23 left before the Hoosiers exploded. Durham scored five straight points and Johnson capped the burst with a 3-pointer to give Indiana a 26-14 lead with 7:24 to play.
Illinois moved within 28-20 on a basket by Black with 3:03 left before the Hoosiers scored the next five points.
--Field Level Media