Wayne State held a 37-35 lead with 18:56 to play, but a cold streak allowed Illinois to pull away in the second half for a 79-51 win over Wayne State in an exhibition game with 13,164 fans at Assembly Hall in Champaign, Illinois.
The Wildcats never led in the first half, but Illinois’s biggest lead was just six points on two occasions. A Brandon Paul three pointer gave the Illini an 18-12 lead with 9:58 to play in the first half, and the Illini took another six point lead at 25-19 on a Tracy Abrams three pointer with 8:01 remaining in the first half. Wayne State responded with three pointers from Amry Shelby and Jordan Holdsworth along with two free throws by Shelby with 4:57 to go tied the score at 27-27.
Illinois had a 35-32 halftime lead, but Wayne State scored on their first two possessions of the second half, a dunk by Clayfell Harris and a three pointer from Vontrell Seroyer to take their first and only lead of the night at 37-35 with 18:56 to go in the game. Then the Wildcats went cold from the floor as Illinois went on a 14-0 run over the next five minutes to take control of the game.