Illinois has been struggling lately and coach Bruce Weber tried to correct that with a new lineup. Though it didn’t seem to give the Illini much of an edge, it did launch them into a victory over Minnesota.
Mike Davis had 17 points and nine rebounds and Demetri McCamey scored 17 points in a surprise role off the bench to lead Illinois to a 71-62 victory over Minnesota on Thursday night.
D.J. Richardson added 11 points for the Illini (16-8, 6-5 Big Ten), who outscored Minnesota 23-2 off the bench to snap a four-game road losing streak.
Trevor Mbakwe had 17 points and 16 rebounds and Ralph Sampson III added 16 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks for the Golden Gophers (16-8, 5-7). Minnesota has lost four straight games, including two at home that have seriously hurt their NCAA tournament resume.
Blake Hoffarber had 15 points, but Minnesota’s leading scorer made just 5 of 13 shots and was harassed all night by a determined Illinois defense.
As the clock ticked down, a vocal contingent of Illini fans chanted, “This is our house!”
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