EVANSTON, Ill. (WCCU/WICS/WRSP) - After another slow start, Illinois showed what it was capable of in a come from behind win on the road against Northwestern.
The Illini trailed 43-28 at halftime, before outscoring the Wildcats 53-13 in the second half to come away with the 81-56 win.
"I've never been in anything like that," said center Kofi Cockburn. "I was in awe, man. Just being on the floor, watching it happen, being a part of it, it was a really good feeling."
Trent Frazier started the second half with a three pointer, while the Illini forced missed shots on back-to-back Wildcat possessions, starting a dominant defensive performance over the final twenty minutes.
"To come out in the second half and hold a team to 8% and two field goals, I've not been a part of that," head coach Brad Underwood said.
"Coach emphasizes all the time that offense wins games, but defense wins Championships," said Cockburn, adding, "I think that we're the best defensive team in the country. Period."
While the defense led the way, the offense followed. Illinois shot 19-32 (59.38%) from the field in the second half getting double digit performances from Cockburn (18 points, 12 rebounds), Dosunmu (15 points), Trent Frazier (14 points), and Adam Miller (14 points).
Illinois' performance a historic one, putting up numbers rarely seen over the last two decades per @StatsBySTATS
Illinois (9-3 (5-1)) returns to the State Farm Center on Sunday to host Maryland (6-6 (1-5)) at 7 pm on Big Ten Network.