(Photo Courtesy of Desmond Fischer/ Xavier Newswire)
There were a lot of grumblings going around Xavier nation over the last few weeks. The Musketeers were on a brutal three-game losing streak losing each game by double-digits, and the team was starting to show shades of last year's disappointing season. Tonight though, Xavier got back to their winning ways by beating Patrick Ewings's Georgetown Hoyas.
New Starting lineup:
Quentin Goodin was out for tonight's game due to a knee injury per Travis Steele, but even so, there was a lot of talk from the Xavier staff about a new starting five for the team to shake things up and to play the "Xavier Way." Zach Freemantle made his first career start at the college level along with Paul Scruggs, Naji Marshall, Jason Carter, and Tyrique Jones. Freemantle had four offensive rebounds and four points.
For Once, It wasn't Xavier with the lengthy scoring drought:
Mac McClung had the first four points for the Hoyas early in the game, but after that, Xavier held their own over the first three media timeouts. Georgetown went six minutes and four seconds from taking the 4-2 lead to making a free throw for their fifth point of the game. Patrick Ewing's squad had moments where it looked like some aliens snuck into the Cintas Center and stole their talents.
Mac McClung Struggles:
Despite what Slam Magazine may have told you from tonight, Mac McClung did not "show out." Sure, there was one nice fast-break dunk off of a steal, and he did make some tough shots, but overall, McClung shot just 6-19 from the field. Naji Marshall was the leading Xavier player to guard Mac throughout the game, and he gave the sophomore guard a ton of fits throughout the game.
The Kyky Tandy show:
It was Kyky Tandy's world tonight, and we were all living in it. Tandy had a career-high 18 points tonight shooting 4-8 from three, including a couple baskets from Steph Curry range. The Freshman guard also showed the ability to attack the rim and draw fouls through the game. Tandy and Naji Marshall lead the Musketeers offense through the night.
Overall, this was a performance Xavier has needed since conference play began. They are now sitting at 13-6 overall and 2-4 in the Big East. Up next, Xavier will head to Omaha for their rematch with the Creighton Blue Jays. Creighton beat the Musketeers at the Cintas Center on January 11th by a score of 77-65.