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    Illini Open Season With Basketball Madness
    Brandon Paul enters the court at Illini Basketball Madness.

    Brandon Paul enters the court at Illini Basketball Madness.

    Oct. 16, 2009

    Champaign, Ill. - Illinois opened the 2009-10 college basketball season Friday night, hosting Illini Madness in front of a crowd of 7,632. Following the volleyball portion of the evening, which featured the No. 10 Illini defeating No. 6 Minnesota, basketball took center stage. Coach Jolette Law and the women's team were introduced, followed by the arrival of the men's team and Coach Bruce Weber. The teams took part in a combined shooting contest, won by seniors Dominique Keller and Jenna Smith, who defeated Bubba Chisholm and Macie Blinn in the finals. Up next was the dunk contest. Illini freshman Brandon Paul took the tile, defeating junior Mike Davis in the final round. The evening concluded with a 15-minute men's scrimmage. The Blue team defeated the Orange, 53-42. High scorers were freshman D.J. Richardson with a game-high 19 points and junior Demetri McCamey with 15.

    "This was a great night for our volleyball team, to play in front of a school-record crowd and beat the number six team in the country in three sets," Weber said. "For us, this was an opportunity to have some fun and build some excitement for the season. Our players really look forward to Illini Madness. They enjoy being in front of a crowd after going through all the preseason workouts, weights and conditioning. Tomorrow it gets more serious. We need to get to work in practice and continue our preparation for the season."

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