CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Michael Finke led all scorers with 20 points and 10 rebounds, posting his second career double-double, as Illinois beat Division III Augustana 96-62 Wednesday night at State Farm Center.
Five players scored at least 10 points for the Illini who improved to 5-0 for the first time since the 2014-2015 season. Leron Black posted 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting, while Mark Smith (13), Aaron Jordan (12) and Trent Frazier (10) were the other three in double-figures.
“I think I’ve learned that we’re tough and we’ve got to continue to be tough,” Finke said. “That’s something we pride ourselves in and ‘everyday guys’ is something Coach Underwood has since the first day he walked in here.”
Everyday guys that are starting to show their strengths, especially Finke who went 3-of-6 from behind the arc.
“It felt pretty good,” the Centennial grad said. “The first half, obviously I felt the three balls working. The first two games, my shot wasn’t falling from three but I’ve always said, said it for years, shooters shoot. So I just continued to stay with that.”
Junior guard Aaron Jordan has also stayed with it, sinking all four of his 3-pointers.
“I’ve always had fun when I’m out there just playing with my teammates, playing for my teammates, getting things done,” the Plainfield native said. “You can’t just help but have fun out there.”
“We’re starting to see productivity coming from a lot of different places and that’s not just our starters we got a great lift from our bench and maybe that means we’re growing and we’re becoming a pretty solid and deeper basketball team,” Underwood said.
Illinois has another quick turnaround hosting North Carolina Central Friday night at 6:30 p.m.