Marcus Domask and Terrence Shannon Jr. score 33 apiece as No. 20 Illinois beats No. 11 Florida Atlantic 98-89 in Jimmy V Classic

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Marcus Domask and Terrence Shannon Jr. score 33 apiece as No. 20 Illinois beats No. 11 Florida Atlantic 98-89 in Jimmy V Classic

NEW YORK — Marcus Domask and Terrence Shannon Jr. scored 33 points apiece, both career highs, as No. 20 Illinois shot 63% and surged ahead in the second half for a 98-89 victory over No. 11 Florida Atlantic in the Jimmy V Classic on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden.

Playing in this event for the second consecutive year, the Illini (7-1) won their fifth straight game thanks to Domask and Shannon, who combined for 47 points after halftime and were a combined 25 of 35 from the field.

“I knew going in that was a smaller team so we could probably have our way inside,” Domask said. “Just trying to play within the offense. Terrence probably yells at me more than the coaches telling me to be aggressive and stuff like that.”

Domask shot 15 of 21 and surpassed his previous high of 32 points set Jan. 29 for Southern Illinois at Illinois State.

“He’s unstoppable,” Shannon said. “I’m always on him about being aggressive and he (was) tonight and I was really proud of that, and he could do that every night.”

Shannon went 10 for 14 and hit 11 of 13 free throws a year after leading Illinois to an overtime victory against Texas in this event. He topped his previous career high of 30 points set versus Monmouth in November 2022.

“Obviously, those two were pretty special tonight,” Illinois coach Brad Underwood said. “Heck of a college basketball game. That was terrific. It’s not often you shoot 63% and you need all of that to win.”

Domask and Shannon became the first Division I teammates to each score at least 30 points on 70% shooting in a game since Thomas Kenney and Drew Samuels did it for Marist in a 119-108 loss to Niagara in January 1999, according to OptaSTATS.

Vladislav Goldin scored a career-best 23 points before fouling out in the final minute for Florida Atlantic (7-2), which made its first appearance at Madison Square Garden since beating Tennessee and Kansas State in the East Regional of the NCAA Tournament in March to reach its first Final Four.

Johnell Davis added 19 points as the Owls shot 48% from the field. But they had few answers for Domask and Shannon on defense.

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“Shannon is one of the most dynamic wings in the country and when we didn’t get our defense set and he had any seams or gaps in transition, he did a great job of attacking and getting downhill and was able to convert,” Florida Atlantic coach Dusty May said. “Domask, he was great. Obviously he took advantage of some of the things we typically are OK giving up and he continued to punish us.”

Shannon and Domask pushed Illinois to a 10-point lead with about 6 1/2 minutes left. Florida Atlantic twice cut it to two, but the Illini made nine free throws the rest of the way to ice it.

Coleman Hawkins returned to the starting lineup for the Illini after missing three games with a knee injury. The senior forward had nine points and three steals in 26 minutes.

Florida Atlantic: The Owls have been inconsistent on defense this season. They’ve held opponents under 70 points in five games but allowed at least 80 three times. They gave up 86 in a five-point win over Butler on Nov. 23 and 89 in a seven-point victory against Texas A&M a day later.

Illinois: Rebounding was a major strength until Tuesday, when the Illini were outrebounded 28-26 and gave up 12 offensive boards. Illinois outrebounded Rutgers 55-28 in its Big Ten opener Saturday.

Florida Atlantic: Hosts Florida International on Dec. 13.

Illinois: At No. 17 Tennessee on Saturday.

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