MADISON (WCIA) — Illinois basketball proved it can withstand a grueling three games in five days by getting their second victory without Ayo Dosunmu on the court. Illinois never trailed in its 74-69 victory against Wisconsin on Saturday, despite a season-high 20 turnovers.
“I think that’s a little bit of the challenge without Ayo, but again it was just guys making plays” says head coach Brad underwood. “Wasn’t pretty on either end, but guess what? When you’re on the road and you’re at the end of February, who gives a dang.”
The battle was won on the defensive side, the Illini holding the badgers to 3-14 behind the arc in the first half. The Illini guards also stepped up to fill the role of Dosunmu, with Da’Monte Williams, Adam Miller, and Andre Curbelo making big contributions.
Williams had 12 points, going 4-6 from the field, and 3-4 from three. Following Miller’s 16-point performance at Nebraska, the freshman had six in Madison, while grabbing five rebounds. Curbelo led the freshman with 17 points.
“I enjoy watching those guys play, and all the questions that they ask whether it’s the veterans or the coaches,” says Williams. “they just come each and every day locked in, and they know mistakes are going to happen, but you just got to get over it and get to the next one.”
Illinois’ next big test will come on Tuesday, when they travel to Ann Arbor to face No. 3 Michigan.