Roger Powell Jr. shoots over Oakland's Patrick McCloskey during the first half at Assembly Hall Wednesday night.
Nov. 24, 2004
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Luther Head scored Illinois' first seven points and finished with 22 to lead the fifth-ranked Illini to their third straight win, 85-54 over Oakland, Mich., on Wednesday night.
Head's short jumper opened the scoring. After Oakland (0-2) tied it, Head hit a 3-pointer from the right wing, stole a pass and sprinted the length of the court for a layup to give the Illini (3-0) a 7-2 lead.
Head hit a career-high six 3-pointers. He also had nine assists and two steals.
Five of Head's 3-pointers came in the first half, including one during an 11-0 run that gave Illinois a 25-9 lead midway through the half and a pair to finish off an 11-3 run near the end of the half to build the lead to 47-24.
Deron Williams scored 17 points and also had nine assists for Illinois. Roger Powell Jr. added 10 points, James Augustine had 11 rebounds and blocked four shots and Warren Carter came off the bench to hit four consecutive shots for eight points.
Dee Brown, who led Illinois in scoring in its first two games, was held to just six points.
Oakland's zone defense gave the Illini some problems inside. Only 20 of Illinois' points were scored from the lane, and the Golden Grizzlies forced 16 turnovers and had 12 steals.
But Illinois' accuracy meant it could simply shoot over Oakland's zone. The Illini were 12-of-24 from 3-point range as a team and wound up shooting 56 percent from the field.
Rawle Marshall, Kris Krzyminski and Cortney Scott each scored 11 points and David Carson added 10 for the Grizzlies. Scott had five steals.
By JIM PAUL
Associated Press Writer