LAS VEGAS, Nev. (WCIA) — Illinois loses to Virginia 70-61 at the Continental Tire Main Event tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Illini (No. 19) faced Virginia (No. 16) in the championship after beating UCLA (No. 8) on Friday. Virginia beat Baylor (No. 5) Friday.

It was a defensive based game with Illinois and Virginia. The Illini were leading at half, but in the end Virginia went on a 11 point run to extend the lead in the last five minutes.

The title belt is going back to UVA after the Wahoos win the Main Event championship, handing Illinois its first loss of the season.

The Illini had victory in sight, but will be asking what could have been after a late game collapse. Virginia went on a 13-0 run to take control and net the win, a late Skyy Clark 3 was the only points in the final 3:38, in a shaky finish that left Coleman Hawkins confused at what went wrong.

“You know there might have been some tough calls against us, people’s heads weren’t focused on the right things. At the end of the day I honestly couldn’t tell you what happened, it just went to chaos,” Illinois forward Coleman Hawkins said.

After scoring a game high 29 in Friday night’s win over UCLA, Terrence Shannon Jr. was held to a season low nine points. Jayden Epps and Hawkins were the only two Illini in double figures, scoring 14 and 10. Free throws a big difference in the game, Illinois went 4-of-9 from the line, Virginia made 25 of its 32 attempts.

“I thought there were a few plays where we were pretty vertical and went up and didn’t go our way but we’ve got to be ball tough and smarter and not foul,” Illinois head coach Brad Underwood said.

Despite the loss, the Illini say they learned a lot from playing their high major games of the season.

“I just learned we’re tough and like I said we can compete with anybody in the country really,” Hawkins said.

“You guys hardly ever hear me happy after a loss but I’m in a fairly good place with what can be,” Underwood said.

So that’s it from the strip here in Vegas, as Illinois heads back to Champaign Sunday night with a few days off before returning to the court Friday night, closing out the first month of the season with back-to-back home games.