Late cold snap knocks Illini from unbeaten ranks

By IlliniGuys Staff

November 26, 2022

(Cover photo courtesy Illinois Athletics)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Adalia McKenzie scored a season-high 22 points, but it wasn't enough to overcome a late cold snap by Illinois as they suffered their first loss of the season to Delaware, 83-80.

The game was the second of two games the Illini (6-1) played at the Daytona Beach Invitational, their first games away from home after opening the season with five games at State Farm Center.

Illinois was down 40-36 at halftime, but rallied behind McKenzie, who scored seven points in a 10-0 run to open the third quarter.  Delaware would rally to retake the lead at 53-50.  But after a Kendall Bostic layup to cut that deficit to one at the 9:42 mark in the fourth quarter, Illinois failed to make another field goal for 6:40, relying on 15-of-17 free throw shooting to stay in the game.

Delaware had its largest lead at 81-73 with 13 seconds, but Illinois put up a frantic fight.  McKenzie and Cook scored back to back buckets and then Genesis Bryant hit a three-pointer with six seconds left to pull Illinois within one at 81-80.  But Delaware's Nakiyah Mays-Prince hit one of two free throws to close out the win for the Hens.

McKenzie fell just one point shy of tying her career high, set last December against Butler.  Bryant added 18 points, Cook scored 16, and Jada Peebles 11 for Illinois.

Makayla Pippin and Klark Sconiers scored 18 points each for Delaware (4-2).

The Illini return home briefly before heading back on the road to face Pitt in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Wednesday.

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