March Madness

Top-Seeded Illinois Breezes Past Drexel, Meets Loyola in Second Round

Photo by Josh Duplechian/NCAA Photos via Getty ImagesINDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 19: Kofi Cockburn #21 of the Illinois Fighting Illini huddle up in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament held at Indiana Farmers Coliseum on March 19, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Illinois Fighting Illini defeated the Drexel Dragons 78-49.

The No. 1-seeded University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign rolled past No. 16-seeded Drexel University 78-49 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament March 19. The Illini advanced to the second round where they’ll match-up up against No. 8-seeded Loyola March 21.

Photo by Josh Duplechian/NCAA Photos via Getty Images INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MARCH 19: Ayo Dosunmu #11 of the Illinois Fighting Illini puts the ball up against the Drexel Dragons defense in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament held at Indiana Farmers Coliseum on March 19, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Illinois was led by its pair of Associated Press (AP) All-America honorees in the victory over the Dragons. Sophomore center Kofi Cockburn, who was named to the AP Second Team All-America, finished with a game-high 18 points on 8-for-11 shooting. Junior guard Ayo Dosunmu notched a double-double, recording 17 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Cockburn was named to the AP Second Team All-America, while Dosunmu received first team honors.

Drexel’s leading scorer was first-year guard Xavier Bell, who finished with 12 points. Senior forward James Butler was the only other Dragon to reach double figures, chipping in 10 points.

Illinois was extremely efficient on offense, shooting 57.1 percent from the field and only committing five turnovers. Meanwhile, Drexel shot 30.6 percent and turned the ball over 11 times.

Photo by Josh Duplechian/NCAA Photos via Getty Images INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MARCH 19: The Illinois Fighting Illini huddle up in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament held at Indiana Farmers Coliseum on March 19, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Illinois Fighting Illini defeated the Drexel Dragons 78-49.

The second round game between the Illini and the Ramblers is set for March 21. Tip-off time, location and broadcasting information hasn’t been announced yet.

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