Europe lead 10-6 heading into Sunday’s Ryder Cup singles after a one-sided penultimate session at Gleneagles.
Europe won Saturday afternoon’s foursomes 3½-½ to move to within four points of retaining the trophy.
Paul McGinley’s men lost the morning’s fourballs 2½-1½ before making it 7-1 in foursomes matches over two days.
However, the US led by the same margin after two days at Medinah in 2012, only for Europe to stage a comeback and clinch a remarkable win
The US also came back from 10-6 down to win 14½-13½ at Brookline in 1999.
Europe have won seven of the last nine Ryder Cups, while the US have not won an away match since 1993.
“We are not finished. We have a lot of work to do and we have to be on it in the morning,” said Europe captain McGinley, who was a vice-captain in Chicago two years ago.
US captain Tom Watson, who left Phil Mickelson out for the entire day for the first time in 10 Ryder Cups, said: “We have come back from 10-6 before. They know it and I’ll reiterate it.
“Our rookies played some magnificent golf and we have the players to come back. Credit to the Europeans, they played some great golf. It seems the foursomes is their forte.”
Victories for Lee Westwood and Jamie Donaldson, Graeme McDowell and Victor Dubuisson and Sergio Garcia and Rory McIlroy built Europe’s cushion before Martin Kaymer and Justin Rose rescued a half on the 18th to keep the home side unbeaten in the afternoon.
And it was at the final hole in Saturday morning’s fourballs that McIlroy and Ian Poulter secured another vital half to keep Europe in front when the US threatened to draw level with two big wins.
A Ryder Cup record 21 under from Rose and Henrik Stenson in a thrilling 3&2 win against Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar also checked the US resurgence.
Selected to go straight back out despite losing 4&3 to Jim Furyk and Hunter Mahan in the morning, Westwood and Welsh rookie Donaldson, 38, won their second foursomes point with a 2&1 victory over Zach Johnson and Kuchar.
One down after four, one up after seven and all square after eight, Westwood and Donaldson eased clear with a birdie at the ninth and remained in front until sealing the victory on the 17th.
“It was hugely satisfying,” said Englishman Westwood, who is now the joint-fifth most successful player in Ryder Cup history. “It’s tough to win a point in the Ryder Cup.”
Westwood, 41, has scored 23 points in nine Ryder Cups and leapfrogged the late Seve Ballesteros to move level with American legend Arnold Palmer.
Another point in Sunday’s singles would put him joint-second with Germany’s Bernhard Langer, with only Sir Nick Faldo ahead of them on 25 points.