Illini Hold Bulldogs To 28.6 Percent Shooting From The Field
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – A distinct height advantage went a long way in helping No. 19 Illinois defeat Yale on Tuesday. The Illini, who started two 6-9 forwards and a 7-foot center, outscored the Bulldogs 44-20 in the paint and kept the Yale offense on the perimeter en route to a 73-47 victory before a predominantly orange attired crowd of 13,858 at Assembly Hall.
After making 12 three-pointers in last Thursday's upset of Boston College, Yale wasn't nearly as sharp against the Illini. The Bulldogs connected on just 4-of-20 treys, thanks in large part to an aggressive Illinois defense.
"We were open for shots for a split second, but they were able to recover quickly," said James Jones, The Joel E. Smilow Class of 1954 Head Coach of Men's Basketball. "I thought we showed a lack of understanding of when we were open."
D.J. Richardson led three Illinois players in double figures with 16 points. Demetri McCamey added 11 points and Mike Tisdale contributed 10 points and 13 rebounds.
The Illini (5-1) scored the first five points of the game and led 12-3 after eight minutes. The Bulldogs, though, scored the next eight points. Illinois answered with a 10-4 run and built the advantage to 13, 30-17, at halftime.
Morgan's three-pointer cut the deficit to nine with 15 minutes remaining, but Illinois then went on a 12-2 run over the next five minutes to seize control.
"In key stretches, our defense wasn't what it needed to be," Jones said.
The Illini shot 61.3 percent (19-of-31) from the field in the second half.
The Bulldogs committed a season-high 22 turnovers.
NOTES: The game served as a homecoming for Yale senior guard Raffi Mantilla, a native of Mundelein, Ill., which is a suburb of Chicago. Mantilla scored two points and grabbed four rebounds in 14 minutes of action… This was only the second game between the Bulldogs and Illini. Illinois defeated Yale 71-67 in the 1949 NCAA Tournament at Madison Square Garden… The Bulldogs play their home opener against Army on Saturday at 2 p.m… Chris Hine, the Illinois beat reporter for the Chicago Tribune, was a roommate of Yale guard Porter Braswell in New York two summers ago. Hine, then a student at Notre Dame, was interning for the New York Times, while Braswell was interning for Goldman Sachs. Hine wrote this story on Braswell for the Tribune's website prior to the game.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity