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Tisdale, Illinois cruise past Ohio State

Jan 21, 2009 - 6:27 AM CHAMPAIGN, Illinois (Ticker) -- Mike Tisdale scored 15 points and Demetri McCamey added 13 and seven assists to lead 24th-ranked Illinois past Ohio State, 67-49, on Tuesday.

Dominique Keller scored 10 of his 12 points off the bench in the first half as the Fighting Illini (16-3, 4-2 Big Ten) matched their win total from last season and bounced back from a six-point loss to Michigan State on Saturday.

"Last year we had guys that were maybe focused more on their stats," Tisdale told the Champaign News-Gazette. "This year, I think everybody's out for the wins."

The Buckeyes (13-4, 3-3), who had their three-game winning streak snapped, trailed 38-26 at halftime and were unable to pull closer than eight points in the second half.

"I think you look across the board and each guy (on the Illinois roster) has improved," Ohio State coach Thad Matta told the newspaper.

The Illini, who never trailed in the game, used a 14-3 run midway through the first half to turn a 7-7 tie into a 21-10 advantage. Ohio State would cut the deficit into single digits on just two occasions, but another spurt early in the second half put the game away.

Illinois got off to the fast start thanks to sloppy play by Ohio State, which committed nine of its 20 turnovers in the early going.

After the Buckeyes scored the first four points after the break to cut the deficit at 38-30, Tisdale scored seven points during a 13-4 run that opened up a 17-point lead for the Illini.

"I was concerned whether we'd bounce back after the tough loss at Michigan State," Illinois coach Bruce Weber told the paper. "But I told them that we have good passers and we have shooters."

Tisdale made 5-of-7 field goals and all five free-throw attempts as Illinois beat Ohio State for the first time in six tries.

B.J. Mullens scored 14 points off the bench on 6-of-8 from the field for Ohio State, but he converted just 2-of-9 free-throw attempts. William Buford added 13.

The Buckeyes leading scorer at 15.9 points per game, Evan Turner was held to a season-low four points on 2-of-7 from the field.

"Every time you take the floor for every Big Ten game you play, you've got to be ready," Matta said. "You take wins, you celebrate them for 15 minutes and you've got to shift gears and get ready for the next game. Same thing with a loss."