After a back-and-forth contest, No. 24 Xavier took control late to defeat Duquesne, 71-63, on Sunday afternoon. With the victory, the Musketeers took sole possession of first place in the A-10 conference.
With an 8-1 run, the Dukes surged past Xavier to take a six-point lead with 12 minutes remaining. But the Musketeers battled back and, after a few possessions, junior guard Tu Holloway and sophomore guard Mark Lyons stuck back-to-back 3-pointers to bring Xavier within one. A timeout by the Dukes could not stop the Xavier onslaught, as the Musketeers took a lead they would never relinquish with a dunk from senior Jamel McLean.
Holloway scored 20 points, snagged seven boards and dished out three assists to lead Xavier to victory. Senior forward Dante Jones poured in 19 points, tying his career-high and center Kenny Frease added a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. McLean just missed a double-double as well, contributing 10 points and nine rebounds.
No. 23 Temple Earns Tough Road Victory at Dayton
Behind 26 points from junior guard Ramone Moore, No. 23 Temple earned a 75-63 road win over Dayton on Saturday afternoon. It was the sixth win in a row for the Owls, who improved their record to 19-5 overall and 9-2 in the A-10. With the loss, the Flyers fell to 17-9 and 5-6.
In addition to the hostile environment, Temple was missing their leading rebounder and best interior defender, senior forward Lavoy Allen. He missed the game due to a sprained ankle suffered in the final minutes of the Owls’ victory over Fordham last Wednesday. Despite this, Temple held Dayton to 37 percent shooting for the game.
Moore helped the Owls make up for Allen’s absence in other ways than just scoring. He had a career-high nine rebounds in the contest, as did junior forward Micheal Eric. In addition, junior forward Scootie Randall came up big with 17 points of his own.
Rhode Island Earns OT Win on Wilson’s Putback
Despite trailing by 17 points in the second half, Rhode Island managed to come all the way back and knock off Charlotte, 71-70, in a thrilling overtime contest. The game came down to the final seconds, as junior Jamal Wilson scored his first and only basket of the game on a put- back as time expired, giving the Rams the victory.
Charlotte looked to have the game in control for most of the afternoon. The 49ers held a 32-23 halftime lead and extended it to 17 with an 8-0 run to begin the second half. However, Rhode Island would not give up. The Rams went on a 13-0 run, which included three 3-point baskets, cutting the lead to three with 12:35 remaining.
URI then reclaimed the lead on an emphatic jam from junior Orion Outerbridge, who was fouled on the play. Outerbridge converted his free throw, giving the Rams a 51-48 lead.
Charlotte did not roll over, though, as the teams battled down the stretch to go into overtime.
Sophomore Akeem Richmond was the top scorer for Rhode Island, scoring 20 points, including six 3-point shots. Sophomore Nikola Malesevic added 19 points of his own.
Ben Lambert can be reached at email@example.com.