(Photo by Bob Stevens)
by Tim Daniel
The shorthanded Musketeers took care of business and picked up the much-needed win.
On the day Xavier was announced as the last 4 seed for the NCAA Tournament, Sean Miller's team returned home from their two-game road losing streak to face the DePaul Blue Demons, a team that got the better of the Musketeers, but this time Xavier was ready.
Going into the first media timeout, Xavier was able to show their physicality leading 12-4, and getting the better of the bigger DePaul team in the paint. DePaul was able to respond in the second war even taking a 13-12 lead but from there it was all Muskies.
Xavier ended the half with a 37-14 score expanding the floor with three-point field goals from Colby Jones, Souley Boum, and Adam Kunkel. DePaul just didn't have the horses to match Xavier's scoring ability.
The Musketeers took a little bit to get going in the second half. Jack Nunge did get a dunk on an alley-oop to start the half but from there Xavier struggled and weren't able to score for nearly three minutes.
The team would respond by putting the game completely out of hand by the eight-minute, and with five minutes remaining Sean Miller was emptying the bench to get players some extra minutes.
Overall, a much-needed win for Xavier as they pick up their 20th win of the season for the first time since the 2017-18 season.
Up next for Xavier, a home game Tuesday night vs Villanova. Xavier defeated Villanova earlier this year in Philadelphia so they are looking to sweep the Wildcats for the first time since joining the Big East.
Tip-Off will be at 6:30 PM Est.