No. 10 Illinois falls to Marquette on the road, finishes with 26 turnovers in one-point loss


Cameron Krasucki

An “Illini” light display is shown at State Farm Center on Nov. 9 during Illinois’ win over Jackson State. The Illini struggled against the Marquette Golden Eagles, losing 67-66 on the road despite Trent Frazier’s 23-point performance.

By Christian Jones, Staff Writer

Illinois lost to Marquette, 67-66, behind 26 turnovers and bad decision-making late in the game, leading to the team’s first loss of the season.

Both teams had sloppy starts at Fiserv Forum. The Illini turned the ball over five times in the first five minutes, and Marquette had three turnovers in that time. However the Illini recorded four fouls before Maquette fouled them once. 

Jacob Grandison scored the Illini’s first bucket of the game on an open three after Coleman Hawkins had his shot blocked in the post. He’d score again on a floater giving the Illini a 7-2 lead with 17:05 to go in the first.

Marquette would then go on a 6-0 run over the next two minutes, taking the lead on a Darryl Morsell three with 14:53 to go.

Omar Payne made one free throw before Trent Frazier went on a solo 9-1 run from 13:21 to 11:45. In that time, he hit a stepback three, scored an and-1 and made an open corner three off of a pass from Da’Monte Williams. The Illini led 17-9.

Marquette’s defense picked up, holding the Illini to just five more points before they went on a scoring drought that lasted eight minutes, while the Golden Eagles scored 12 points in that time.

The Illini were stopped several times in the paint, including a Kur Kuath block on a Coleman Hawkins dunk with 4:27 left to go.

Hawkins would end the Illini scoring drought with a layup to tie the game at 23-23 less than 20 seconds later, but, by that time, Marquette had all the momentum.

The drought was partly caused by Curbelo’s absence after he went to the bench early with two fouls and four turnovers.

The next Illini bucket would come on a Hawkins and-1 dunk, with the assist credited to Frazier. Hawkins missed the free throw, but Da’Monte Williams grabbed the offensive board, his fourth rebound of the game. 

With 2:11 left in the first, the Illini had 10 offensive rebounds. When Hawkins missed a three with just under two minutes to play, Williams grabbed another offensive board, but the Illini couldn’t capitalize. They would receive a shot clock violation on the possession.

Marquette went down the court and almost immediately scored again, as Morsell hit another three to give Marquette a 28-25 lead.

Hawkins scored the last field goal of the half after Omar Payne recorded his third offensive rebound of the game, the Illini’s 12th of the half.

Hawkins’ dunk cut the lead to one as the first half ended, though Marquette led 28-27 at the break. Frazier led the Illini in scoring in the first half with nine points but scored his last bucket with more than 11 minutes left in the half.

Hawkins took the most shots and grabbed the most rebounds, ending the half with six points and four rebounds. Curbelo played only eight minutes and recorded four of the Illini’s 15 turnovers. He scored just two points.

Marquette was led by Morsell, who scored eight points, and Kur Kuath, who recorded five points, two rebounds and three blocks.

The Golden Eagles started the second half by expanding their lead to five points. Justin Lewis made a layup and hit a mid-range jumper, giving him nine points on the night.

Hawkins scored the first points of the second half for Illiini at just over a minute into the second half on a layup assisted by Curbelo.

Curbelo, Payne and Grandison would all score in the next two minutes. Grandison’s corner three gave the Illini a one point lead, and Curbelo extended the lead to five with a layup and a mid-range jumper.

At 14:29, the Illini led by one before Fraizer hit his fifth three of the game from the corner, extending the lead to four. On the next offensive possession, the Illini would score when Marquette got a tip but didn’t recover the ball, leaving their defenders out of position while Jacob Grandison cut to the basket for an open dunk, his 10th points of the game.

After a Williams steal, his second, that led to a missed layup from Curbelo, Marquette would fail to score on the other end. The Illini went down the court and scored again on a Fraizer three,and the Illini led 48-41 afterward.

Neither team would score for the next 50 seconds until Fraizer hit another three, giving him 18 points in the game. Most of his points came from assisted 3-pointers. Frazier’s three gave the Illini a 51-42 lead.

Meanwhile, Andre Curbelo continued to struggle, missing a layup and having another blocked by Kur Kuath in transition.

The Illini then went on a 7-4 run, capped off by a Hawkins three from straight away, giving him 11 points with 10 minutes to go in the half. Morsell and Lewis scored the game’s next four field goals to cut the Illini lead to three with 7:27 left, while Morsell had 19 points.

Following a Morsell missed free throw, Frazier would attempt and make another corner three with 6:50 to go in the game, giving him 23 points while going 6/9 from three.

With 5:33 left in the game, the Illini led 63-57 when Williams missed a jumper, Hawkins flew in from outside the paint for a huge putback slam, followed by a Marquette timeout. This gave Hawkins 13 points.

Marquette would then go on a 5-0 run, led by Morsell to cut the lead to 3. The Illini led 65-62 with 4:21 to go. An Andre Curbelo free throw would be the Illini’s last points for the next three minutes. In that time, Marquette cut the lead to one on a Justin Lewis free throw.

With 2:32 left, Curbelo attempted a deep step-back three and airballed, while Williams dove in to save the ball, throwing it off a Maquette player. On the inbound, Frazier missed a jumper, and Marquette secured the rebound.

The score was locked at 66-65 for over two minutes, with the Illini up one. With 30 seconds left, Marquette redshirt freshman Tyler Kolek missed two free throws that could have given them the lead.

While bringing the ball up with less than 20 seconds to go, Andre Curbelo had the ball stolen by Kolek, who scored on the fast break to give Marquette a one-point lead. On the next possession, Curbelo attempted to drive to the hoop only to have the ball stolen with three seconds left and ultimately seal the Golden Eagle upset.



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