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Johnson leads No. 14 Purdue over Illinois

Feb 13, 2011 - 8:59 PM Champaign, IL (Sports Network) - JaJuan Johnson led all scorers with 24 points and grabbed nine rebounds, as No. 14 Purdue earned an 81-70 victory over Illinois at Assembly Hall.

E'Twaun Moore turned in a solid game with 20 points and five boards, while Lewis Jackson contributed 10 points and five assists for Purdue (20-5, 9-3 Big Ten), which has won two straight and five of its last seven overall.

Brandon Paul netted a team-best 23 points for Illinois (16-9, 6-6), which has dropped four of six. Mike Davis ended with 16 points and seven rebounds, while D.J. Richardson had 13 points in defeat.

Illinois scored the first seven points of the contest before Purdue answered with seven straight to tie things nearly 6 1/2 minutes in.

The back-and-forth battle continued throughout the half. Davis' two free throws capped a 6-0 run to put the Fighting Illini ahead 26-19 with 4:33 remaining.

Three makes at the stripe by Moore and D.J. Byrd's triple quickly cut the Boilermakers' deficit to one near the three-minute mark, but Illinois closed strong and was up 32-27 at the break.

The hosts stretched their advantage to seven early in the second half before a 10-0 burst put Purdue in front.

Ryne Smith and Moore each hit a three-pointer during the surge and Johnson finished it off with a pair at the free throw line for a 39-36 game.

Smith's fast-break layup extended the Boilermakers' lead to six, 50-44, with 11:43 remaining and Kelsey Barlow made a layup with 8:38 left to put the visitors up by double-figures at 59-49.

Illinois could only get as close as six the rest of the way.

Game Notes

Purdue improved to 92-84 in the all-time series versus Illinois...Barlow and Smith finished with nine and eight points, respectively, for Purdue, which made 41.7 percent of its shots and hit 7-of-20 from three-point range...Illinois made 43.6 percent from the floor and 5-of-16 from beyond the arc.