Illinois vs. University of California – Men’s College Basketball Game Recap – November 18, 2022

LAS VEGAS — — Terrence Shannon Jr. hit 8 of 9 3-pointers and scored 29 points with 10 rebounds. 19th-ranked Illinois rallied from a 15-point deficit to defeat No. 8 UCLA 79-70 Friday night.

The Illini (4-0) will play No. 16 Virginia in the championship game on Sunday for the Tire Continental main event. UCLA (3-1) faces fifth-seeded Baylor in the consolation game.

UCLA led 44-29 early in the second half, and the Bruins were ahead by 10 points as Illinois took a 22-6 lead, never backing down to the cheers of the pro-Illini crowd.

“I’m really proud of this group,” said Illinois coach Brad Underwood. “With fifteen mains, the eighth-ranked team in the country, a lot of unknowns, and a lot of guys who’ve never been there, they don’t do anything close to what it used to be. Now it’s been a home court for us. I’ll say that.”

Shannon, who said he was “in the zone the whole game,” shot 9 of 13 overall. Perhaps the only area where he struggled was at the free throw line, where he went 3-for-7. Texas Tech’s conversion surpassed 1,000 career points.

He entered the Friday game as one of four players nationally to average at least 22 points, six rebounds and three assists. Shannon had three assists against the Bruins.

β€œHe turned into a Steve Curry when he got here,” said substitute Matt Meyer of Illinois, who scored 11 points.

Tiger Campbell Scored 22 points and Jaime Jacques Jr. 20 with the Bruins. UCLA led 37-28 at halftime and extended the lead to 15 points on a 3-pointer by Jaquez less than two minutes into the second half.

Then Shannon hit 3 to start Illinois’ rally, and by the time the Illini finished, they had scored 51 points in the second half.

UCLA coach Mick Cronin said he wished he’d watched the game “as a fan”, but was critical of his team, saying his players were willing to hang “a banner because we beat Norfolk State”.

“I don’t have any positive thoughts on any player about UCLA’s performance, no one, including the coach,” Cronin said.

Tip-ins

Starting in 2024, UCLA-Illinois will be a conference game once the Bruins are in the Big Ten, unless the UCLA governors decide otherwise. They meet on December 14 to decide whether UCLA will join the Big Ten. … This is the first meeting since the 1996-1997 and 1997-98 seasons, when the teams divided their meetings, and each of them won at home. … UCLA lost for the second time in a row at T-Mobile Arena. The Bruins also lost to Arizona 84-76 in the Pac-12 Conference Championship game last season. … Illinois is the winningest team in the Big Ten over the past three seasons with a combined conference record of 44-16.

The Big Picture

UCLA: Five key players are returning from a Bruins team that went 27-8 last season and claimed the Sweet 16 title from the NCAA Tournament. Among them are Campbell and Jackie, who each have over 1,000 career points and were first team All-Pac-12 last season. To balance out the veterans, the Bruins have six freshmen, including two McDonald’s All-Americans.

Illinois: The Illini added eight new players after last season, including three transfers from Power Five schools to join the top 10 class. They had to make up the teams for losing all five starters from a team that won the Big Ten regular season title. Illinois has advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament in each of the past two seasons.

next one

The Illini take on Virginia for the championship title, while UCLA plays Baylor in a consolation game between teams ranked in the top 10.

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AP College Basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball, https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll, and https://twitter.com/ AP- Top 25

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