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Purdue beats Illini on Delinger's FG in OT

Purdue beats Illini on Delinger's FG in OT
Published On: Sat, Oct 08
Oct 25, 2014; Champaign, IL, USA; Minnesota Golden Gophers quarterback Mitch Leidner (7) throws a pass against the Illinios Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium. Illinois beat Minnesota 28 to 24. Mandatory Credit: Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

J.D Delinger's 28-yard field goal in overtime lifted Purdue lifted to a 34-31 victory over Illinois on Saturday in "The Cannon Trophy" game at Memorial Stadium at Champaign, Ill.

The Illini's Chase McLaughlin's 41-yard field-goal attempt as time expired in regulation bounced off the goal post to send the game into overtime.

McLaughlin had been perfect on the season on field goal (5 of 5) and extra-point attempts (12 of 12) until that miss.

Purdue (3-2, 1-1 in the Big Ten) won the coin toss heading into overtime and elected to play defense. The decision proved to be the difference as Illinois quarterback Chayse Crouch fumbled to put Purdue in a position to win the game.

Until then, Crouch was magnificent for Illinois (1-4, 0-2), coming off the bench to replace injured starter Wes Lunt in the second quarter.

Crouch finished with more than 260 total yards and a pair of touchdowns.

McLaughlin got the chance to win the game in a hectic final minute of regulation after Hardy Nickerson intercepted a pass by Purdue quarterback David Blough.

Nickerson's interception came after Blough's third-down pass fluttered to the turf. But a targeting call on Illini defensive back Carroll Phillips gave Purdue new life.

Heading into Saturday, both teams were desperate for a win.

Illinois, under first-year coach Lovie Smith, had lost three straight games.

The Boilermakers, with fourth-year coach Darrell Hazell on the hot seat with a 2-23 conference record, were blown out by Maryland last week 50-7.

The offenses were on display in the first half when the Boilermakers took a 21-16 lead into intermission. The teams combined for more than 500 first-half yards.

The big difference was, Purdue converted 7 of 10 third-down conversions while Illinois was only 1 for 5.

The Illini opened the scoring on McLaughlin's 20-yard field goal to cap a seven-play, 78-yard drive.

The Boilermakers countered near the end of the first quarter by scoring the game's first touchdown on Blough's 5-yard run to put Purdue up 7-3.

Crouch's 26-yard run at 5:11 in the second put Illinois up 14-13.

Blough marched the Boilermakers 75 yards to pay dirt and the lead in a little over two minutes. Malik Kimbrough hauled in a 45-yard scoring strike and Delinger's extra point made it 21-13.

McLaughlin was good from 34 yards with 29 seconds left in the half to make the score 21-16.

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