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Big second half leads Illinois over Northwestern 66-50

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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) _ Malcolm Hill scored 18 points to lead Illinois to a 66-50 win over Northwestern on Tuesday night.

The two teams played a tight contest where the deficit didn’t grow larger than four points for much of the game. But Northwestern suffered an eight-minute scoring drought in the last 10 minutes and Illinois build its lead to double digits for the first time.

Illinois (16-12, 6-9 Big Ten) controlled the pace for much of the game, including offensively where the Illini shot 40 percent from the field and 6 of 18 from 3-point range.

Leron Black had a strong presence, scoring seven of the Illini’s first eight points. He finished with 11 points and eight rebounds.

Bryant McIntosh led the way for Northwestern (20-8, 9-6) with 16 points.

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Northwestern travels to Bloomington for a Saturday night matchup against Indiana.

Illinois heads back to the road for a Sunday evening game at Nebaska.