Abrams leads Illinois past Indiana 64-54

Illinois guard Tracy Abrams (13) looks to pass against Indiana's Evan Gordon during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in the first round of the Big Ten Conference tournament Thursday, March 13, 2014, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Illinois guard Tracy Abrams (13) looks to pass against Indiana's Evan Gordon during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in the first round of the Big Ten Conference tournament Thursday, March 13, 2014, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Tracy Abrams had 25 points to lead ninth-seeded Illinois to a 64-54 win over eight-seed Indiana on Thursday in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.

The Illini (19-13) used runs of 9-0 in the first half and 11-0 in the second half to improve to 6-2 all-time against Indiana in the Big Ten Tournament.

The victory sends Illinois into a second-round matchup on Friday with Big Ten regular season champion No. 8 Michigan.

Abrams stymied a late rally by the Hoosiers (17-15) with a 3-pointer and two free throws that turned a late 53-52 Illinois lead into a 58-52 advantage.

Rayvonte Rice added 13 points and Kendrick Nunn scored 10 for the Illini.

Yogi Ferrell led the Hoosiers with 14 points. Will Sheehey added 13 points — 11 of them in the first half — and Troy Williams scored 11 for Indiana.

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