Fighting Illini basketball has officially returned to the State Farm Center. The Orange and Blue hosted Washington University for an exhibition game on Sunday and, surprisingly, the final outcome was within single-digits.
Illinois got off to a bit of a slow start, however they eventually went on a 14-0 run to take a 40-30 lead into the locker room at halftime. The Illini picked up right where they left off, erupting for another 15 unanswered points to begin the second half; the lead ballooned to as much as 69-40.
Unfortunately, John Groce’s squad appeared to take their foot off the gas, and Wash-U managed an 18-1 run of their own to close to within 12 points at the five-minute mark. The Bears continued to chip away, however they ultimately ran out of time and lost by a final of 82-75.
Maverick Morgan scored a team-high 20 points for the Fighting Illini. Malcolm Hill also ended the night with 11 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals.
Illinois’ next exhibition game will take place on November 4 against Louis.