- Associated Press - Saturday, December 5, 2015

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) - Chris Cokley scored 20 points, Dirk Williams added 16 points off the bench and Alabama-Birmingham rode a strong second half to a 74-61 win over Illinois State on Saturday night.

The Blazers (5-3) trailed by four, 29-27 in the final minute of the first half. Williams knocked down a 3-pointer with 36 seconds left to cut the deficit to a point.

Cokley hit the first four field goals as UAB traded baskets to start the second half. William Lee put the Blazers in front for good with a 3-point play with 12:52 left in the game to start a 19-2 run.

UAB finished shooting 50 percent from the field (28 of 56), including 9 of 22 (40.9 percent) from beyond the arc.

DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell scored 18 points and made 8 of 20 shots from deep to lead Illinois State (3-5).

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