Kendrick Nunn scored 11 of his 19 points in the second half and Illinois halted its eight-game losing streak with a 60-55 victory over Penn State on Sunday.
Nunn, averaging 4.1 points per game, was 7 for 13 from the field and made four 3-pointers for Illinois (14-10, 3-8 Big Ten). Malcolm Hill added 11 and Rayvonte Rice nine for the Illini.
Illinois grabbed a 53-52 lead at the 5:15 mark and hung on.
Penn State (12-12, 3-8), which has lost two straight games after a modest three-game conference win streak, was led by 19 points from D.J. Newbill and 11 from Tim Frazier. The Newbill-Frazier backcourt tandem entered the game ranked fifth in NCAA scoring totals. Frazier also became Penn State's career leader in assists, passing Freddie Barnes (600) with 601.
Illinois' last victory was a 75-55 decision over Penn State Jan. 4.
Indiana State 60, Drake 56: Khristian Smith scored 19 points, including a dunk and free throw to give Indiana State a five-point lead with 1:13 left, as the Sycamores held on to beat Drake.
Drake's Karl Madison made a layup with 58 seconds left to pull the Bulldogs within three and had a chance to tie the game at 59 with 5 seconds left, but Aaron Hawley's shot was off the mark. Smith then made one of two free throws with 3 seconds left to secure the win.
Manny Arop had 13, on 5-of-13 shooting, for Indiana State (18-6, 9-3 Missouri Valley Conference).
Indiana State took a 54-46 lead with 4:42 left before back-to-back 3-pointers by Carter and Hawley pulled Drake within 54-52 with 2:33 remaining.
Western Michigan 74, Northern Illinois 71: David Brown scored 26 points, hitting 5 of 8 from 3-point range, as Western Michigan held on over Northern Illinois.
Western Michigan (14-8, 7-3 Mid-American) led by as many as 16 in the second half and was up by 12 with less than 6 minutes to play but Northern Illinois went on an 11-1 run to come within 71-69 with 2:04 left.
Missed free throws by Western Michigan gave Northern Illinois (10-12, 4-6) chances to tie the game in the waning seconds but the Huskies missed a pair of 3-pointers, including a potential game-tying 3 at the buzzer by Aaric Armstead.
Jordan Threloff led the Huskies with 16 points.
Bradley 83, Evansville 66: Walt Lemon Jr. scored 25 points and Xzavier Taylor added 14 points and grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds to help Bradley roll.
Bradley took the lead for good at the 15:45 mark in the first half. Taylor made a pair of free throws to make it 47-36 with 16:46 to play, and the Braves led by double digits the rest of the way. Lemon scored 16 points in the second half, and finished 10 of 16 from the field. Tyshon Pickett added 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting.
Bradley (11-14, 6-6 Missouri Valley) now sits in a four-way tie for third place in the conference standings.
D.J. Balentine scored 23 points and Blake Simmons 18 for Evansville (10-15, 3-9). Egidijus Mockevicius added 14 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. Duane Gibson did not take a shot, but had eight assists.
Loyola of Chicago 79, Illinois State 69: Christian Thomas and Munster grad Joe Crisman both scored 17 points to pace Loyola.
Loyola (9-15, 4-8 Missouri Valley) raced out to a 15-5 lead, hitting six of its first seven shots, including four treys — two by Thomas. The Ramblers cruised to a 37-20 halftime lead.
A 7-0 run by Illinois State (13-11, 6-6), including a trey by Nick Zeisloft, cut its deficit to nine at the 14-minute mark of the second. But Loyola responded with a 7-0 run of its own and its lead never dipped into single digits again.
Loyola shot 55 percent from the floor and made 8 of 16 from beyond the arc. Nick Osborne and Milton Doyle both added 14 points.