Zach Griffith Italy trip

Illinois junior forward Zach Griffith stands in front of Leonardo Da Vinci's 'The Last Supper,' painting on Tuesday inside the refectory at Piazza Santa Maria Delle Grazie in Milan, Italy.

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Illini junior forward from Fisher updates us daily on the team's trip in Italy

After a much needed night of rest, we started off our second day in Italy on Tuesday with breakfast in the hotel followed by a tour of the Piazza Santa Maria Delle Grazie.

The guided tour consisted of a brief history of the monument, along with a 15-minute viewing period inside the refectory where Da Vinci’s ‘The Last Supper’ painting is held. Learning the numerous conflicts that the painting has endured, it’s unbelievable to see it still standing today. Now, it was time to use the rest of the afternoon to shake off any remaining jet lag and prepare for our game against CUS Insubria that started at 7 p.m. local time.

Walking into the gym in Varese, I was reminded of my playing days at the Fisher Grade School in junior high ... except without air conditioning this time. CUS Insubria was made up of local 21-22 year-old Italians and two Serbians that flew in just to play our squad. Needless to say, they didn’t have much experience playing together, but they had a few talented players that made for a competitive game.

The first five minutes were about getting adjusted to the heat and getting our feet back under us after being off for multiple days due to travel. After the halfway point in the first quarter, things started to click, leading to a 118-56 win. Everyone gave great contributions on both sides of the ball and Ayo Dosunmu led our balanced scoring attack with 27 points.

The focus on Tuesday night was recovery and staying hydrated for a quick turnaround on Wednesday. We will take on the Gazzada All-Stars at 8 p.m. local time here on Wednesday following a tour of Lake Como in the morning. Stay tuned Illini fans!

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