Illinois Falls in Junkanoo Jam Championship
Nov. 24, 2012
Freeport, Bahamas - Illinois, looking for its biggest win of the season thus far, fell to Iowa State, 68-50, in the championship game of the Junkanoo Jam. The statistics were even in every category with the exception of field-goal shooting. While both teams suffered through some scoring slumps, Iowa State (45 percent FG pct.) recovered in time to pull away from the Illini, who shot just 32.7 percent for the game, including a 28.6 clip in the first half.
Each team had 35 rebounds while the Illini had two more turnovers than the Cyclones (19-17). Iowa State led 29-21 at halftime, but the Illini held the Cyclones without a point in the first five-plus minutes as they tied the score at 29-29. Sophomore Ivory Crawford led Illinois in scoring with 11 points and converted a lay-up and subsequent free-throw for a three-point play to start the run while senior Karisma Penn, who finished with 10 points, scored the final five. Crawford converted a three-pointer with 14:41 remaining to give Illinois its only lead of the second half at 32-31.
The Illini, who were held 31 points under their scoring average, scored just 13 points in the next 10 minutes. Iowa State, meanwhile caught fire from outside. Tournamnet MVP Hallie Christofferson (18 points) hit three treys and scored 13 points in a five minute-stretch of the second half as the Cyclones extended a 44-40 lead to 64-45 with two minutes remaining. Nikki Moody and Brynn Williamson also connected on long-range shots in the 20-5 run that sealed the deal for Iowa State.
Illinois junior Amber Moore had three 3-pointers for nine points to go along with six assists while sophomores Taylor Tuck and Nia Oden each added eight points for the Illini, who fall to 3-2 on the season. Penn just missed a double-double with nine rebounds. Iowa State, who had beaten its first three opponents by an average of 26 points, moves to 4-0.
Illinois next faces Wake Forest as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Thursday, Nov. 29 at the Assembly Hall Tip-off is 7 p.m.