Devoe Joseph scored 16 points and Minnesota helped its NCAA tournament chances while dealing a blow to Illinois' hopes with a 62-60 road victory on Saturday.
The Golden Gophers (17-11, 8-8 Big Ten) led by 19 with 7:11 to play and looked to be cruising to the victory, but the Illini (18-11, 10-6) rallied to cut the deficit to one in the final 80 seconds.
D. J. Richardson's shot to tie the game at the buzzer was short.
Each team had just two points 6:20 into the game. Minnesota led 24-14 at halftime. At one point, Illinois endured a 4:45 scoring drought while the Gophers scored seven points.
Illinois' Demetri McCamey was held to nine points on 4-of-18 shooting while registering 10 assists. McCamey fouled out as did Bill Cole, who led the Illini with 15 points. Mike Davis had 10 points and 12 rebounds for Illinois.