(MCT) CHAMPAGIN — Illinois coach John Groce stood with his hands on his hips Thursday while chaos ensued around him.
All season he has talked about how his team is resilient. They proved it in the most unlikely way, upsetting No. 1 Indiana, 74-72, on Thursday night.
The party took a break to hold its breath as officials checked the replay and Groce collapsed momentarily in a seat to catch his breath after they deemed Tyler Griffey's last-second, wide-open layup was good.
Griffey took an inbound pass with 0.9 seconds left to convert the shot. Senior D.J. Richardson, who scored eight points in a 9-1 run to tie the game at 70-70, stood on the scorer's table pumping up any members of the crowd that had not stormed the court.
Victor Oladipo hit a layup for a 72-70 lead, but Brandon Paul made two free throws. Richardson stole the ball on the other end and drove in, but a hustling Oladipo blocked his shot out of bounds, setting up Griffey's layup.
The win snaps a three-game losing streak for the Illini (16-8, 3-7 Big Ten), who had not beaten a No. 1 team since 2004.
Richardson finished with 23 points, while Paul added 21. Cody Zeller led the Hoosiers (20-3, 8-2) with 14.