CHAMPAIGN, Ill (WCCU/WICS) - The wins continue to roll for the Illinois men's basketball team. The No. 19 team in the nation defeating Minnesota 59-51 on Thursday night for its seventh straight win on the season.
The Fighting Illini were led by senior Andres Feliz who scored a team high 17 points to go along with 8 rebounds. Feliz was one of four Illinois players to finish in the double-digits, along with Ayo Dosunmu (13 points), Trent Frazier (10 points), and Kofi Cockburn, who finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds for the ninth double-double of his freshman season.
After leading for a majority of the game, the Illini extended their lead to 13 points midway through the second half. Potential NBA lottery pick Daniel Oturu, helped lead a charge to get the Gophers back to within one in the final minutes.
Junior Da'Monte Williams would come up with a huge block and steal and on the defensive end, to help the Illini seal the win to improve to 16-5 (8-2) and remain tied for first place in the Big Ten standings.
Illinois will now open up its most difficult stretch of the season. Six Big Ten teams, including No. 19 Illinois, are currently ranked in the AP Top 25 poll. The next five games for the Illini come against the other five Big Ten teams currently ranked. That stretch opens up at No. 18 Iowa on Sunday.