CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Kofi Cockburn recorded an impressive double-double with a career-high 33 points and 13 rebounds and No. 13 Illinois bounced back with a dominating 92-65 victory over Minnesota in a Big Ten conference opener for both teams on Tuesday night. Box Score
IMPROVING PREVIOUS BEST
Cockburn, a sophomore center from Kingston, Jamaica, tallied 17 of his total points and nine rebounds in the just second half and shot 6-of-7 from the field as the Fighting Illini (5-2, 1-0 Big Ten) rebounded from the defeat to Missouri Saturday night.
Cockburn, who improved his previous high of 26 points against North Carolina A&T last December, shot 12-of-15 from the floor overall on Tuesday and also had a pair of block shots in front of around 170 people inside the State Farm Center.
Adam Miller added 14 points with four 3-pointers, while team-leading scorer Ayo Dosunmu finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Trent Frazier also scored 10 points and Da’Monte Williams ended with eight rebounds for Illinois, which led 40-29 at halftime.
Marcus Carr had 16 points, six rebounds and four assists to lead Minnesota, but was only 3-of-13 shooting from the field.
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Liam Robbins scored 10 points before fouling out as the Golden Gophers (6-1, 0-1 Big Ten) had their six-game winning streak snapped.
BIG RUNS WINS IT FOR ILLINOIS
Both teams traded baskets in the early action, but Illinois took control of the contest with a 14-2 run to build a six-point lead and then extend that advantage to as many as 15 points in the first half.
The Fighting Illini were even more dominant after the halftime break with the lead never going below double figures and went as high as 36 points with 2:45 left.
Illinois shot 53.1% from the field overall and had 21 assists on 34 made baskets. The Fighting Illini dominated the boards, outrebounding Golden Gophers 53-35 and outscored their opponents 48-14 in the paint.
Minnesota, which led 10-8 with 17:02 left in the first half before that lead evaporated, was 27.5% shooting from the floor on 19-of-69. They went just 7-for-28 from 3-pointers for 25.0% in the defeat.
Minnesota returns home against Saint Louis for its next game on Sunday, while Illinois visits No. 19 Rutgers on the same day.