NCAA Tournament 2013 bracket, Miami vs. Illinois: Hurricanes survive Illini, 63-59

Ronald Martinez

Miami survived a late charge from Illinois and will face Marquette in the Sweet 16.

The No. 2 Miami Hurricanes staved off a tough showing from the No. 7 Illinois Fighting Illini, winning 63-59 and advancing to the Sweet 16.

Both teams started out pretty well in a half where Illinois was typically in striking distance of the Hurricanes. Tyler Griffey was keeping them in it, drilling all three of this 3-point attempts and grabbing five boards, while Shane Larkin was his typical self with eight points and four assists. Miami led by as much as seven, but the Illini would score the last four points of the half to go into the break down 29-26.

The Illini continued to give Miami fits in the second half, using a 15-6 run at the end to take a 54-52 lead with three minutes left. Miami would take the lead back thanks to a clutch 3-pointer from Larkin. A questionable out-of-bounds call gave Miami the ball back with 36 seconds left, and they made their necessary free throws to send the Illini packing.

Larkin finished the game with 17 points and five assists. Rion Brown came off the bench and scored 19 points to lead the Hurricanes. Kenny Kadji chipped in with 10 points and seven rebounds. Brandon Paul was the big star for Illinois, racking up 18 points.

Miami will go on to play No. 3 Marquette in the Sweet 16 next weekend.

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