Dee Brown scored 14 points and Brian Randle got a key rebound in the waning seconds, helping the 12th-ranked Illini hold off North Carolina, 68-64, last night in a rematch of last season's NCAA championship game.
James Augustine added 13 points and 13 rebounds for Illinois (6-0), which improved to 3-4 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The Illini also snapped the Tar Heels' 21-game home winning streak despite scoring only four points in the final 61/2 minutes.
Tyler Hansbrough led North Carolina (3-1) with 17 points, and fellow freshman Marcus Ginyard had 14.
No one expected a true rematch of the final because only seven remaining players on the two teams even played in that game, won 75-70 by the Tar Heels. But this one had all the drama of a matchup in March, thanks to a furious rally led by a bunch of North Carolina freshmen.
The quartet of Hansbrough, Ginyard, Bobby Frasor and Danny Green scored all 29 points in the second half, including six clutch free throws from Hansbrough and three-pointers by Frasor and Ginyard down the stretch.
* WAKE FOREST 91, WISCONSIN 88: Justin Gray scored a career-high 37 points, including six free throws in the final 28 seconds, to lead the No. 22 Demon Deacons past the Badgers in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
Kyle Visser added all of his 13 points and five assists after halftime for the Demon Deacons (6-1), who led by 10 in the second half but had to hold on for their 21st straight home win.
Wake Forest has won 51 of 52 home games against nonconference opponents, and improved to 3-0 against the Badgers in the seventh annual event. Alando Tucker scored 23 of his 27 points in the second half for the Badgers (4-1).
* CONNECTICUT 68, ARMY 54: Rudy Gay had 17 points, 10 rebounds and 5 steals, and the Huskies shook off a sluggish start to win in Hartford, Conn.
The third-ranked Huskies (5-0) were coming off victories over Arizona and Gonzaga to win the Maui Invitational, but they struggled for long periods against the scrappy Black Knights (2-3).
* KENTUCKY 75, HIGH POINT 55: Point guard Rajon Rondo had 14 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists to lead the No. 10 Wildcats at home. Ramel Bradley scored 14 points and Patrick Sparks added 13 for Kentucky (5-1), which won its third straight.
* TEXAS 82, TEXAS-PAN AMERICAN 54: LaMarcus Aldridge scored a career-high 23 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and the No. 2 Longhorns shook off poor shooting in the first half to win at home. P.J. Tucker added 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Longhorns (6-0), off to their best start since winning their first 14 games in the 1981-82 season.
* ALABAMA 73, LOUISIANA TECH 63: Jermareo Davidson had 15 points and 16 rebounds, sparking the decisive run to lead the No. 21 Crimson Tide at home. The 6-foot-10 center went outside to hit two jump shots and spark a 15-4 run after the Crimson Tide (3-1) briefly fell behind six minutes into the second half.
* HOUSTON 84, LSU 83: Oliver Lafayette scored 27 of his 32 points in the second half and the Cougars rallied to victory on the road over the No. 25 Tigers. The Cougars (2-1) trailed by 12 at halftime but outscored the Tigers 18-3 in the first 41/2 minutes of the second half to take a 49-46 lead. Lafayette scored 11 points in the run. LSU fell to 3-1.
* LOYOLA 68, AMERICAN 60: Andre Collins and Michael Tuck scored 16 points apiece to help the host Greyhounds win their third straight. This is Loyola's first 3-0 start since the 1998-99 season. American fell to 0-4.
* UCLA 73, ALBANY 65: Aaron Afflalo scored 22 points and Cedric Bozeman had 16 as the Bruins shot 48 percent for the game, including 48 percent (10 of 21) on three-pointers, as the No. 16 Bruins (5-1) regained the lead in the second half and held off the Great Danes (1-4) in Los Angeles.