Xavier Pulls Away from Ohio Late. We're on to Cincinnati
It took until about 10:47 to go in the game for Xavier to start closing Ohio out, but once they did, they finished the game with one of their best stretches of the season.
With 10:47 remaining the score was 56-54 and then Xavier went on a 26-7 run including a 5:59 run in the last 5:59 of play to get their sixth win of the season. Xavier was lead by Sophmore Guard Paul Scruggs putting together one of his best games of his Xavier career scoring 21 points on 8 of 9 shooting and also racking up 8 assists, a new career high. "I loved it. It made me wanna play harder." Naji Marshall said sitting next to Scruggs in the post game press conference. "I wanted to be in for every minute of it."
Marshall also had a nice game for the musketeers with 17 points and a team high 7 rebounds. Marshall and Scruggs stepped up big in a game Xavier was down Junior Point Guard Quentin Goodin who the guys say they didn't know was out until around 90 minutes before tip-off. Xavier also saw Tyrique Jones go down with a head injury late in Wednesday Night's victory. Scruggs and Marhsall had mentioned they thought he would be fine, but Xavier Coach Travis Steele said he didn't have a total update on Jones status.
Steele did go on to mention that he felt Xavier's defense worked really well by mixing man and zone defenses and got their Defensive Efficieny Rating (DER) to a .84 tonight.
Up next for Xavier, the infamous Crosstown Shootout at 5/3 Arena against city rival University of Cincinnati Bearcats. Tip-off is live at 2:00 on ESPN2.
Tim Daniel covers Xavier Basketball and Northern Kentucky Basketball for 48 Minutes. If you wanna discuss the Norse or Muskies, get in touch with Tim Here.