Conference play is underway for area teams, and both Illinois and Notre Dame were able to pick up a key win over the weekend. Illinois won a tough game over Nebraska 59-54 on Saturday to improve to 3-1 in Big Ten play. The Illini played without Mike Maniscalco, and leading scorer D.J. Richardson was limited to 21 ineffective minutes due to an injury of his own. Illinois struggled without their contributions and trailed by three with about five minutes left, but they did enough down the stretch to pick up the win.
Notre Dame, meanwhile, added a huge win to its resume with a 67-65 road win over Louisville in double overtime. The win followed a disappointing 16-point loss to Cincinnati. Jack Cooley led the Irish with 18 points and 10 rebounds.
On the heels of a dramatic home victory over Pittsburgh, DePaul traveled to Villanova on Sunday looking to keep that momentum going. But the Wildcats -- desperate for a conference win -- were the better team from start to finish and won the game, 87-71. Brandon Young had 22 points for the Blue Demons in the loss.
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