DePaul wrapped up its five-game, season-opening home stand Tuesday with a second consecutive victory. The Blue Demons (4-1) knocked off the Northern Illinois Huskies (3-2), 78-67, at Allstate Arena.
DePaul’s offense struggled in the first six minutes. The Blue Demons were shooting 2-for-8 from the field and trailed 10-6 before junior forward Myke Henry‘s scored his first points on a second-chance bucket.
Henry was coming off a career-high 29 points in DePaul’s win Sunday against Stanford, and in the previous game he posted a double-double against Lehigh with 24 points and 10 boards.
He was not quite as impressive Tuesday, but he was still one of the team’s scoring leaders with 15 points on 6-for-14 shooting, including a pair of 3-pointers.
Northern Illinois led once again, 19-17, inside of 10 minutes in the first half after junior guard Chuks Iroegbu made a layup. Then the Blue Demons went on a big run that would put them in the lead for good.
Sophomore forward Tommy Hamilton IV got things started with a layup for his first points of the night. Hamilton tweaked his ankle Sunday but appeared healthy.
He saw the floor for 33 minutes Tuesday and recorded 13 points, five rebounds and three blocks. He also shot 6-for-9 from the field.
The Blue Demons scored 13 unanswered points and wound up taking a 38-29 lead into halftime.
In the second half, DePaul’s lead grew to as many as 19 points. Northern Illinois made a run to cut its deficit to 63-54 with 6:39 remaining, but the Huskies could get no closer.
Sophomore guard Billy Garrett Jr. responded with four straight points at the foul line to bump the Blue Demons’ lead back to double figures inside of five minutes to play. Garrett finished with 15 points and three assists. He shot a perfect 3-for-3 from the field and 8-for-8 from the charity stripe.
Northern Illinois was paced by sophomore guard Aaric Armstead‘s 16 points. Iroegbu and junior forward Darrell Bowie each had 15.
DePaul faces some more local competition Thursday when the team travels to Chicago State. This is the Blue Demons’ third game against a team from Illinois and their second against a Chicago school.
Video highlights courtesy of DePaul Athletics: