The Illinois baseball team defeated Penn State 6-3. The Illini men's tennis team defeated Minnesota 5-1. The Illini softball team lost to Purdue 11-0.
The Illinois baseball team found a Sasquatch statue a few weeks ago at junior outfielder Will Krug's house. They took it with them and have carried it to every game since.
Illinois sophomore golfer Thomas Detry was named to the 10-man Palmer Cup team Thursday. The Belgium native will represent Team Europe in June in England.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS -- The Fighting Illini has a new look and so far it's getting rave reviews.
URBANA, Ill. (UI Release) - The University of Illinois Division of Intercollegiate Athletics, in partnership with Nike, today introduces a new brand and identity system that sets the visual direction for Fighting Illini Athletics for years to come. The updated identity provides a fresh look for one of the most storied brands in all of intercollegiate athletics.
Urbana, Ill. (UI Release) – The University of Illinois carried a one-run lead into the top of the seventh inning, but clutch hitting by DePaul led to four unearned runs, as the Blue Demons came from behind to top the Illini, 5-3.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Illinois first baseman David Kerian is one of only five players on the roster from outside the state, but the transition hasn't slowed him down. In fact, as WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten reports, Kerian has emerged as one of the top hitters for an Illini team looking to get back to the NCAA Tournament.
BASEBALL: ISU 6 Illinois 2 (F)
URBANA, Ill. - The Illinois women's gymnastics team hit the road for Birmingham, Ala. Tuesday night, where they will compete at the NCAA Championships for the fourth time in the last six years. Illinois is the No. 11 seed, and they are coming off a second place finish at regionals. They have already made school history by becoming the first team to go to the NCAA Championships in back-to-back years, but they want even more this weekend.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Illinois coaches John Groce, Tim Beckman and Matt Bollant helped raise money for Coaches vs. Cancer at a dinner and auction in Champaign. The featured speaker was former Illini football player and New York Giants lineman Dave Diehl. Last year the event helped raise $20,000.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Former Illinois gymnastics coach Yoshi Hayasaki has been chosen for induction into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame. He will be one of six inductees later this summer. Hayasaki coached the Illini men for 33 years, winning a national championship and National Coach of the Year honors in 1988. He helped Illinois win six Big Ten championships and was a four-time Big Ten Coach of the Year. Hayasaki will be inducted into the Hall of Fame August 22 during the P&G Gymnastics Championships in Pittsburgh, Pa.
Champaign, Ill. - Champaign-native Rayvonte Rice was named the team's Most Outstanding Player at the Illinois basketball banquet Monday nigh at the I-Hotel in Champaign. Rice led the team in scoring and ranked eighth in the Big Ten with nearly 16 points per game. The Centennial grad and Drake transfer carried his team offensively, scoring in double figures 31 times. Rice was also near the Top 10 in the league in rebounding and sixth in the conference in steals.
Illini head golf coach Mike Small joins Matt Wettersten to talk about the Masters and the Big Ten and NCAA Tournament.
High School and college scores and highlights.
The Blue team defeated the orange team 38-7 in the Illinois football spring game. Bret Beherns has more on the quarterback battle.
For just the second time in program history, the Illini baseball team wins on back-to-back 1-0 shutouts. Illinois defeated Michigan 1-0 making it six wins in a row for the Illini.
URBANA, Ill. - The Illinois softball team is searching for consistency. They have lost six of their last seven games, but they've shown they can compete with anybody. Two of their last three wins have come against Top 20 teams, and now they will take their game on the road this weekend when they visit Wisconsin.
URBANA, Ill. - The Illinois men's gymnastics team begins competition at the NCAA Championships Thursday afternoon. By the end of the weekend they could claim their second national title in three years. Illinois rose one spot to No. 5 in the national rankings heading into NCAA's, but head coach Justin Spring expects a Top 3 finish or better. Last year in the team finals, Illinois put up it's worst score of the year en route to a sixth place finish. Spring expects a much better performance this weekend.
All eyes have been on the quarterbacks this spring, but another group that might be just as important to Illinois' success is the wide receivers group. The Illini lost their top three receivers to graduation, but WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten has more on some new faces that are opening eyes this spring.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - John Groce said Tuesday he will continue to explore the possibility of adding another transfer this offseason, even though right now they don't have any available scholarships. Groce has already been in contact with multiple transfers since Illinois' season ended. Some are fifth-year transfers who could be eligible next season. Others would be transfers will multiple seasons of eligiblity. Groce said it's not a done deal that they will add another player, but he is leaving open that possibility.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Fans hoping for a decision on Illinois' starting quarterback after Saturday's spring game might have to wait a little longer. Head coach Tim Beckman said Tuesday he might wait until fall camp begins before he names a starter. By all accounts, Oklahoma State-transfer Wes Lunt has looked great all spring, and he performed well in Friday's scrimmage at SHG. Lunt seems to still have the inside track on the starting job. Senior Reilly O'Toole and sophomore Aaron Bailey are still getting their opportunities to win that job, and that competition might continue for the next several months before the coaching staff makes a final decision.
URBANA, Ill. - The Illinois men's gymnastics team will go for it's second national title in three years this weekend when they compete at the NCAA Championships in Ann Arbor, Mich. The orange and blue are ranked sixth in the country, and WCIA 3's Bret Beherns has more on one of the biggest keys to their success.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - There is still no word yet on when Illinois ace Kevin Duchene will be back on the mound. Duchene hasn't pitched in nearly a month because of a strained left forearm. Head coach Dan Hartleb is being cautious with his ace, who is 2-1 with a 1.70 ERA. Even without Duchene, the rest of the staff has stepped up. Their 2.80 team ERA is second best in the Big Ten. They're coming off a weekend sweep at Northwestern, where the Illini pitchers allowed only two runs in three games.
Illinois sophomore pitcher Ryan Castellanos is looking up to his big brother Nick, who is the Detroit Tigers' starting third baseman and the team's top prospect.
Former Illinois basketball assistant coach Jay Price weighs in on whether the Illini will look to add another player to next year's team.
Nebraska scored eight runs in the second inning to beat Illinois 12-3 in five innings Sunday afternoon at Eichelberger Field in Urbana.
The Illinois men's tennis team beat Michigan 5-2 Sunday afternoon at Atkins tennis center in Urbana.
The Illinois softball team split with 20th-ranked Nebraska Saturday afternoon, beating the Cornhuskers in game one 11-4 and losing in game two 9-4.
Highlights and reaction from Friday night's Illinois football scrimmage at Sacred Heart-Griffin High School in Springfield.
URBANA, Ill. - The No. 11 Fighting Illini men's tennis team moved its Big Ten record to 4-2 after a dominant 6-1 win over the visiting Michigan State Spartans Friday afternoon at the Atkins Tennis Center. More impressively, the Orange and Blue remain undefeated at home, now with an 8-0 mark.
Morning Show Preview: World's Largest Softball Tailgate
The Illinois baseball team will send Ryan Castellanos to the hill against Northwestern Saturday in Evanston. Castellanos is the only pitcher in the country to have thrown at least 27 innings without issuing a single walk. Castellanos (3-1, 3.33 ERA) has helped anchor a pitching staff, which has the second best ERA in the Big Ten.
We're a little more than a week away from the spring game, and there has been no decision yet on who will be Illinois' starting quarterback this fall. Wes Lunt, Aaron Bailey and Reilly O'Toole are all still splitting up the reps in spring practice. Offensive coordinator Bill Cubit has said all along he will be patient with this group before making a decision.
Centennial senior basketball star Michael Finke and junior quarterback Jimmy Fitzgerald, who have both committed to play their respective sports at Illinois, are taking their skills to a different setting this spring. WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten takes an inside look.
Michael Finke has had a target on his back ever since he committed to Illinois over a year ago. He was the focus of opposing defenses his entire senior season - and all he did was take his game to a whole new level. The Centennial senior is the 2014 WCIA 3 area boys basketball player of the year. Finke was named an IBCA All-State selection after averaging nearly 20 points and 10 rebounds per game as a senior. He did it while shooting better than 55% from the field. Finke led the Chargers to an outright Big 12 title. He finished fourth on Centennial's all-time career scoring list and second in school history in rebounds.
CHAMPAIGN - Illinois is playing some pretty good baseball lately. They have won six of their last seven games. Their only during that span was by one run. The Illini will start a series at Northwestern Friday as they look to keeping things rolling.
Normal, Ill. – The Fighting Illini bats came alive this evening, as the Orange and Blue collected 10 hits, including three home runs, to cruise past Illinois State, 7-4. Sophomore Allie Bauch led off the game with a solo home run. Jenna Mychko ripped a solo shot to start the fourth, then Bauch knocked a two-run dinger later in the inning to put the Illini ahead 5-0 and back Brandi Needham in the circle. With the win, Illinois improves to 17-13, while the Redbirds sink to 12-20.
Illinois basketball recruit Chatrice White will get the opportunity of a lifetime Wednesday night when she suits up in the McDonald's All-American Game (6:00 pm, ESPNU). White is just the second Illinois women's recruit ever to be named a McDonald's All-American, and she talked with WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten about the honor and the chance to play with the best in the country.
The Illinois baseball team will get a rare opportunity Wednesday night. Weather permitting, they are scheduled to play against Missouri at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. It has become nearly an annual tradition for the Illini and Tigers, but the players will tell you it never gets old. This will be the fourth time in the last five years they have played at the home of the St. Louis Cardinals, and head coach Dan Hartleb wants his team to enjoy the moment.
Former Illini assistant basketball coach Jay Price talks about this week in college basketball.
Illinois senior gymnast Amber See helped the Illini get a two-seed at NCAA Regionals for the first time in school history. WCIA 3's Bret Beherns has more on what she means to the team.
The Illinois baseball team beat Purdue 6-2 Saturday afternoon at Illinois Field in Champaign.
The Illinois women's tennis team beat Penn State 6-1 Saturday morning at Atkins Tennis Center in Champaign.
Illinois senior Alex Booker is leading the Illinois softball team this season with a .418 batting average, which ranks 5th in the Big Ten Conference.
Purdue rallied to score three runs in the eighth inning to beat Illinois 4-3 Friday afternoon at Illinois Field.
Ryan Cubit was named the director of football student-athlete development Friday. Cubit is the son of Illinois offensive coordinator Bill Cubit.
The Illinois baseball program has had a number of successful brothers over the years - most recently Josh, Justin and Jordan Parr. But a new pair of brothers have found their way into the starting lineup this year. WCIA 3's Bret Beherns has more on Reid and Ryne Roper, and the instant chemistry they brought to the U of I infield.
URBANA, Ill. - The Illinois softball team (16-10) is off to a good start. Terri Sullivan's squad is six games over .500, and they are coming off a doubleheader split with No. 16 Missouri on Wednesday. Illinois will travel north to face No. 15 Minnesota for a three-game series starting Friday. It's a young Illini team learning as they go. They only have two seniors on the team, and Sullivan is pleased with their progress so far.
Illinois baseball beats Illinois State 6-1. Illini softball splits doubleheader with No. 16 Missouri.
One of the nation's top basketball recruits narrowed his list of schools on Wednesday. Lancaster, Texas five-star power forward Elijah Thomas lists Illinois among his Top 10 schools. The other nine schools on that list are: USC, Florida, Memphis, Oregon, SMU, Oklahoma State, UNLV, Ohio State and Texas. Thomas, who is listed at 6' 9'', 250 lbs, is ranked No. 9 in the Class of 2015 in the latest Rivals.com rankings.
CHAMPAIGN, IL – The 2014 Fighting Illini Caravan schedule has been announced with stops at five locations across the state of Illinois and in St. Louis throughout the month of May. The Caravan begins May 1-2 in Chicago and ends May 29-30 in St. Louis, with visits to the Quad Cities on May 8, Peoria on May 15 and Springfield on May 20 in between.
The Illinois women's gymnastics team was selected for the NCAA Regionals Monday afternoon. They will head to the Minneapolis regional as the No. 11 overall seed - and No. 2 in their regional. Illinois is coming off a fourth-place finish at the Big Ten Championships over the weekend. They have had some success recently at nationals, finishing 11th at the NCAA Championships last year.
Clemson defeated Illinois 50-49 in the second round of the NIT Saturday. Rayvonte Rice scored 15 points and Jon Ekey scored 11. Bret Beherns reports on the game while former Illini assistant coach Jay Price provides analysis on the Sunday Sports Wrap.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS -- Bats were cracking at the UI Softball Fields Saturday.
The Illinois baseball team won both games of a double header Saturday against Xavier 6-1 and 6-2. The Illini softball team split a pair of games. The Illini lost the first 10-7, but won the second 4-3 in extra innings.
Illinois 125 pound junior Jesse Delgado won his second straight NCAA title Saturday night.
The Illini hit the road again for the second round of the NIT Sunday (10:00 a.m.) at Clemson, and the players told reporters on Friday they feel fortunate to still be playing after falling behind by 17 at Boston. The Illini somehow dug themselves out of that hole and survived to play another day.
No. 1 Jesse Delgado (125) won his championship semifinal match against Northern Iowa’s No. 5 Dylan Peters 9-6 to advance to tomorrow’s final. Delgado will wrestle for his second straight national title tomorrow night on ESPN starting at 7 p.m. CT. The Illini are currently in 10th place with 37 points after two days of competition.
BASEBALL Xavier 6 Illinois 2 (F) SOFTBALL Iowa 4 Illinois 3 (F/9)
Illinois head coach John Groce and athletic director Mike Thomas were both in attendance at Carver Arena in Peoria to watch Stevenson High School point guard Jalen Brunson in the state semifinals against Whitney Young. It was a record-setting night for the four-star recruit, who scored 56 points. That set a new IHSA state tournament record. Brunson made seven 3-PT, which breaks the Class 4A state tournament record. Whitney Young won the game 75-68. After the game, Brunson gave the middle finger to Whitney Young fans. He has since issued an apology on Twitter.
Future Illinois basketball players Michael Finke and Aaron Jordan were named to the Illinois All-State team Thursday.
The Illinois men's basketball team won its 20th game of the season Wednesday night, the fifth time in the last six years that's happened. But the Illini's 66-62 win over Boston University in the opening round of the NIT, will go down as one of the most dramatic in school history.
Down 17 points in the first half, second-seeded Illinois battled back to beat host Boston University 66-62 Wednesday night in the opening round of the NIT.
CHAMPAIGN -- Making the NIT tournament meant a possible home game for the Fighting Illini, but not this year.
The Illinois baseball team defeated Indiana State 8-0 Tuesday.
The Illinois basketball team has won five of its last seven games and the Illini feel they are playing their best basketball of the year right now. Illinois plays at Boston in the NIT Wednesday.
One big positive for the Illinois baseball team so far this season has been the play of their ace Kevin Duchene. His 1.70 ERA is third best in the Big Ten, but he's been even better lately. The sophomore has only allowed 2 ER in his last 23.2 IP, and he has gone the distance in two of his last three starts. Head coach Dan Hartleb calls Duchene a "special pitcher," and he credits a new pitch he has added to his increased success.
The WCIA 3 Sports Team brings you a look ahead at the NIT and a look back at the highlights from the regular season.
Former Illinois quarterback Juice Williams is joining Tim Beckman's staff, the university announced Monday. Williams will be the new Director of Alumni and Former Player Relations. It will be his job to manage all alumni and former player relations. He will also assist with on-campus recruiting. Williams led Illinois to the 2008 Rose Bowl and broke Illinois' career and single-season records for total offense.
They aren't playing in the NCAA Tournament, but the Illinois basketball season will continue. The Illini were chosen Sunday night to play in the NIT. They will open up at Boston University Wednesday night at 6:00 pm on ESPN2.
Former Illinois assistant basketball coach Jay Price talks about the Illini's upcoming trip to Boston to play in the first round of the NIT.
Illinois head coach John Groce says his team is excited for the opportunity to play again this season. Illinois will play Boston University in the first round of the NIT Wednesday at 6pm CT.
The Illinois softball team split a pair of games at the Fighting Illini Classic Saturday, beating Omaha 6-1 after losing to North Dakota State 7-4.
Illinois junior point guard Tracy Abrams and the Illini say they're looking forward to a possible NIT bid after losing 64-63 to Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals.
SOFTBALL Illinois 13 W. Michigan 1 F/5 BASEBALL Illinois 5 SIU 1 F
Tracy Abrams was inches away from giving Illinois it's biggest win of the year, but the junior's runner in the lane came up just short at the buzzer as Illinois lost to Michigan 64-63 in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament Friday afternoon. Illinois' last-second attempt came moments after Michigan took the lead on a Jordan Morgan basket with less than 10 seconds left. The loss ends Illinois' run in the Big Ten Tournament, and it also ends any hope Illinois had of making a push for the NCAA Tournament. The Illini (19-14, 7-11) will wait to learn their NIT fate Sunday night.
CHAMPAIGN -- The Illinois Basketball Team tipped off the Big 10 Tournament Thursday morning at 11 am.
Illinois junior Tracy Abrams scored a season-high 25 points to lead the Illini past Indiana 64-54 in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament Thursday in Indianapolis, Ind. Abrams shot 8-16 FG, pulled down seven rebounds, and only committed one turnover. He led three players in double figures. Rayvonte Rice scored 13, and Kendrick Nunn added 10. Illinois (19-13) advances to face top-seeded Michigan in the quarterfinals Friday at 11:00 am CT.
As Illinois gets ready to play in the Big Ten Tournament Thursday, their postseason destination is still very much up in the air. A first-round loss could send them to the CBI. A deep run could send them to the NCAA Tournament - or somewhere in the middle, they'll probably head to the NIT.
Illinois' Kendrick Nunn was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team Monday night. The Chicago-native came on late in the season to average 8.6 ppg during conference play. Joining Nunn on the list are Indiana's Noah Vonleh, Michigan's Derrick Walton, Jr., Purdue's Kendall Stephens and Wisconsin's Nigel Hayes. Nunn is the third Illinois player in the last five years to be named to the All-Freshman Team (Richardson 2010, Richmond 2011).
Illinois will face Indiana for the third time this year when they square off in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament Thursday (11 a.m., BTN). The Illini will be the No. 9 seed, but they come in as one of the hottest teams in the league.
The Big Ten Tournament bracket is all set, and Illinois has earned the No. 9 seed and will face No. 8 Indiana in the first round on Thursday (11:00 am, BTN). The winner of that one gets the top-seeded Michigan in the quarterfinals.
Illinois senior Jon Ekey is the talk of the town after his last-second three won the game for Illinois Saturday night at No. 24 Iowa - the first time the Hawkeyes have lost to an unranked team at home in the last 31 games. WCIA 3's Bret Beherns was there for the magic and has the story.
A look back at Andy Kaufmann's buzzer-beater to beat Iowa at Assembly Hall in 1993.
Illinois junior Jesse Delgado won his second straight conference title at the 2014 Big Ten Wrestling Championships on Sunday. The second-seeded Illini defeated No. 1 seed Nico Megaludis 3-2 in double overtime to help lead the Orange & Blue to a sixth-place finish with 78.5 points. Eight other Illini earned spots on the podium with top-eight finishes, including fifth-place finishes from Zane Richards, Jackson Morse and Tony Dallago.
Illinois senior Jon Ekey saved the biggest shot of his career for his last shot of the regular season. Ekey hit a deep 3 with :0.5 left to lift Illinois to an improbably 66-63 win in Iowa City. Ekey drained three 3-PT on the night - none bigger than the final one. Illinois raced out to a 20-6 lead, threatening to blow out Iowa on their home floor, but the Hawkeyes surged back to lead by five at the half. In the second half, Illinois (18-13, 7-11) managed to re-take the lead late, only to let Iowa tie the game with less than 1:00 to play. That's when Ekey saved the day.
The Illinois men's gymnastics team beat UIC 427.850-401.900. The women beat Lindenwood 197.100-194.450.
The Illinois football team practiced in pads for the first time Saturday as part of their spring workouts leading up to the Spring Game April 12. Several players from last year's team are also working out, but they're preparing for a future in the NFL. WCIA 3's Bret Beherns has more on former Illinois linebacker Jonathan Brown as he gets ready for the NFL Draft.
Illinois might not be at full strength when they finish the regular season at Iowa Saturday night. Senior guard Joseph Bertrand left Tuesday's game early with a knee injury. Head coach John Groce said on a teleconference Friday that Bertrand practiced Thursday and will hopefully be ready. Meanwhile freshman point guard Jaylon Tate will be closer to a game-time deicision as he nurses a foot injury.
The Illinois baseball team will take a four-game winning streak into their series at Western Kentucky this weekend. The start of that series - originally scheduled for Friday - was pushed back until Saturday.
If you're looking for a decision on a starting quarterback soon, you're probably going to have to wait for at least a few more weeks. While offensive coordinator Bill Cubit said earlier this week he could name a starter by the end of spring, he isn't going to force the issue. Right now, Wes Lunt, Aaron Bailey and Reilly O'Toole are all getting equal reps with the first-team offense, and Cubit says that will probably continue for the next few weeks.
Illinois-signee Aaron Jordan was named to the Chicago Sun-Times All-Area Team Friday. The Plainfield East junior - and future Illini - averaged 20 points a game, while shooting 47% from 3-PT range. Curie's Cliff Alexander was named the Sun-Times Player of the Year and the Naismith National Player of the Year Friday.
No matter how the Illinois men's basketball season finishes, head coach John Groce has made a lasting impact in the lives of one central Illinois family. All it took was a letter - a simple response - in a time of need. As WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten reports, it made all the difference.
19 NFL scouts from 18 teams were in Champaign Thursday for Illinois' annual Pro Day. Several Illinois seniors worked out in hopes of impressing the scouts before the NFL Draft in May. One guy who had a lot to prove was linebacker Jonathan Brown. He struggled in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, running it in 5.03 seconds. Thursday he improved that time, clocking in at 4.85. Brown also bench 18 reps at 225 pounds. He only did 16 reps at the Combine.
Illinois cut No. 23 Iowa’s lead to nine with 5:17 left in the game but missed its final seven shots as the fifth-seeded Hawkeyes pulled away for an 81-62 win in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Thursday.
The Illinois Track and Field teams will send three athletes to the NCAA Indoor Championships, which begin March 14 in Albuquerque, N.M. On the men's side, senior Vanier Joseph will run in the 60m hurdles, and junior Davis Fraker will compete in the weight throw. For the women, freshman Kandie Bloch-Jones - an Argenta-Oreana grad - has qualified to compete in the high jump. Bloch-Jones won the Big Ten Championship last week. She becomes the first Illini female high jumper since 2007 to qualify for NCAA Indoors.
Spring practice began Wednesday for the Illinois football team, and the battle for the starting quarterback job is on. Offensive coordinator Bill Cubit said Wednesday he hopes to name a starter by the end of the spring, but he will wait until fall camp if a starter doesn't emerge. Three quarterbacks - Wes Lunt, Aaron Bailey and Reilly O'Toole split up equal reps with the first team on day one.
It was a record-setting night at State Farm Center - just not the kind of history Illinois was hoping to right. No. 12 Michigan led from wire-to-wire en route to an 84-53 win. The 31-point margin of victory is the largest by any visiting team in State Farm Center history. Michigan shot 56% from the field and nearly 70% from 3-PT range. The Wolverines hit 16 threes. That ties a State Farm Center record. Illinois (17-13, 6-11) was led by Rayvonte Rice's 16 points and nine rebounds. Illinois will finish up the regular season Saturday at Iowa.
Spring football practice starts Wednesday at the U of I as Tim Beckman prepares for his third year with the Illini. WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten has more on some of the storylines to watch as Spring practice begins.
Tim Beckman announced Monday that running back Dami Ayoola and defensive tackle Vontrell Williams are no longer with the Illinois football team. Spring practice starts Wednesday. Ayoola was not with the team last year, but he had hoped to come back this year. Beckman said neither player followed the guidelines and expectations needed to be part of the team.