Illinois tops Penn State, moves on to second round of tourney

By Jason Grodsky

INDIANAPOLIS – Chester Frazier’s layup with 3.8 seconds left kept Illinois season alive.

The Illini junior guard took a pass from junior Trent Meacham on Illinois’ last possession and dropped it into the basket to give the Illini a 64-63 win against Penn State in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis.

Senior forward Brian Randle scored a team-high 17 points, but fouled out with more than three minutes remaining and watched in the final moments as his teammates lifted the Illini to victory.

Including Randle, four Illini scored in double-figures and Illinois shot 42 percent and sank nine three-pointers to upset the seventh-seeded Nittany Lions.

Playing in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament for just the third time in the tournament’s 11-year history, Illinois (14-18) took advantage of Penn State’s youth and inexperience, bouncing Penn State (15-16) from the tournament for the second straight season.

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Illinois built leads of 11 and 10 points in the first and second halves, but watched Penn State come back to take the lead with two minutes left before Frazier gave the Illini the lead in the final moments.

For the complete game story, check out tomorrow’s issue of The Daily Illini