COL BKB: Ohio State 68, Illinois 55

March 10, 2013 at 6:44 PM

COLUMBUS, Ohio, March 10 (UPI) -- Deshaun Thomas and Aaron Craft combined for 33 points Sunday and 13th-ranked Ohio State closed the regular season with a 68-55 win over Illinois.

Thomas netted 19 points while Craft added 14 and six assists for the Buckeyes (23-7, 13-5 Big Ten), who reeled off their fifth straight win. Lenzelle Smith Jr. helped out with 10 points and six rebounds.

The result put Ohio State in contention for a earn a share of the Big Ten Conference title with Indiana until the Hoosiers defeated Michigan later Sunday to claim their first outright Big Ten title since 1993.

The Fighting Illini (21-11, 8-10) were paced by Brandon Paul with 21 points and five boards.

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