by Tim Daniel
Over the last few games, as Nate Johnson goes, the Xavier offense goes.
Johnson had a huge night against Virginia Tech in the second game in Brooklyn and kept his groove going into tonight as the team returned to the Cintas Center for a matchup against Central Michigan with 24 points on just eleven field goal attempts. Johnson was 5/8 from 3 pacing Xavier to a blowout victory.
As a team, this was a night Xavier's offense had imagined they'd see more often. Overall the Musketeers shot 12/26 which ended up being 46% from the arch and were 51% from the floor.
Jack Nunge had another solid day with 10 points and seven rebounds while Colby Jones also helped the team with his rebounding ability and box score stuffing stat sheet. Jones only scored nine points but had seven assists, six rebounds, and two assists.
Xavier started the game with a big 25-4 run backed with Johnson's excellent shooting ability and also Jerome Hunter waking up a little bit offensively working to overcome his struggles. Hunter hit two early 3 point shots and ended up with 8 points on 3/6 shooting.
The game got a little sloppy at times, but Xavier still managed to stop Central Michigan from getting anything closer than 16 points on the scoreboard. Xavier had a total of 15 turnovers, something Travis Steele mentioned he wasn't too pleased with.
Zach Freemantle made his season debut tonight, playing just six minutes. Although he didn't have a major impact on the game, he was a welcome sight to see back on the floor for his teammates and fans alike.
Dominant without Scruggs:
It has been well documented that Xavier's team was battling a non-covid sickness during their time in Brooklyn, and Paul Scruggs was playing through the illness. Tonight Scruggs got into some early foul trouble, and also Xavier had a big lead so Paul got to have an easier night playing just 20:36.
Scoring the easy ones:
Travis Steele has been very adamant about his team getting out in transition and scoring off of turnovers. Tonight Xavier had 24 points off turnovers and 16 fast break points that added to their big victory.
The Musketeers travel to Stillwater, Oklahoma for a battle with the Oklahoma St Cowboys. This game will be a part of the Big East/ Big 12 Battle. Tip-off is Sunday, December 5th at 5:00 PM EST and will be televised on ESPN 2.