Kofi Cockburn and Illini dominate Gophers 76-53 – WCCO

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) –Kofi Cockburn had 29 points, 10 rebounds and a four-block record for his eighth double-double of the season and Illinois outscored Minnesota 76-53 on Tuesday night for their fourth straight win in the series.

Cockburn scored five points in a 9-0 run to open the second half to help build a 50-30 lead, and Illinois led by at least 18 points the rest of the way.

READ MORE: American women’s Olympic hockey has 9 players with links to Minnesota

Cockburn, who came in fourth in the nation with 21.8 points per game and third with 12.1 rebounds, was 10 of 19 in the field despite being double-teamed.

Jacob Grandison added 11 points and Alfonso Plummer, who has averaged 22.9 points in the last eight games, scored 10 for Illinois (10-3), who are making their first 3-0 start in the Big Ten since the 2010-11 season. The Illini dominated the paint, edging Minnesota 42-18 with a 52-26 rebound advantage.

Cockburn and Grandison had 11 points in a 13-5 first inning, and Illinois led by 16 points in the first half. Minnesota went on to 35-28 after the Illini returned it on four straight possessions, but it was 41-30 at halftime with 12 points from Cockburn.

Sixth-year senior Jamison Battle and Eric Curry each scored 10 points for Minnesota (10-2, 1-2), which last beat Illinois on Jan. 30, 2019.

Jamison Battle (credit: Aaron J. Thornton / Getty Images)

READ MORE: Wolves stop 3-game losing streak with 122-104 wins over Clippers

The Illini hosts Maryland on Thursday. Minnesota plays Indiana on Sunday.

PROGRAMMING PROBLEMS

The game was postponed for two days due to COVID-19 cases in the Illinois schedule, and both teams were playing for the first time in 13 days. Illinois had to cancel their December 29 game against Florida A&M, and Minnesota’s December 29 game was called off due to COVID-19 cases in the Alcorn State schedule.

NIGHTMARE MATCHUP

In three previous games against the Gophers, the 7-foot, 285-pound Cockburn had 68 points and 29 rebounds. His 33-point performance in Illinois on December 15, 2020 is his record for a Big Ten game and the second-most goals scored in his career. Minnesota had Curry guarding Cockburn for most of the game, dropping three inches and 40 pounds in that game.

NO MORE NEWS: Vikings without playoffs Mike Zimmer enters week of uncertainty

(© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *