GAME NOTES: The Xavier Musketeers look to keep a six-game win streak going when they host the Butler Bulldogs in Big East Conference action on Saturday.
Butler had a five-game win streak snapped in its Big East Conference opener against Villanova Tuesday night, losing to the Wildcats 76-73 in overtime. The only two other losses the Bulldogs have suffered this season came at the Old Spice Classic in Orlando.
Xavier defeated St. John's Tuesday, 70-60, in the team's Big East Conference opener. The Musketeers look to keep their win streak going as they host Butler in the third game of a four-game homestand.
This will be the first time Butler and Xavier meet up as members of the Big East, but Xavier holds the lead in the all-time series between the two programs, 31-17.
Butler battled back against Villanova Tuesday to force overtime, but the Wildcats held on in the extra period to defeat the Bulldogs, 76-73. Kellen Dunham led the way for Butler, scoring 22 points on 7-of-18 shooting from the field. The guard was just 3-of-11 from 3-point range in the contest, but hit a perfect 5-of-5 from the free-throw line. Elijah Brown came off the bench to score 19 points for the Bulldogs, adding five rebounds and three assists in 26 minutes of action. Kameron Woods scored six points and pulled down seven rebounds, but turned the ball over five times in Butler's third loss of the season.
Dunham is the team leader in scoring, averaging 18.4 ppg in 13 contests shooting 41.7 percent from the floor. Senior Khyle Marshall is second on the team with a 16 ppg average, and is also second in rebounds averaging 6.4 rpg. Woods leads the team in rebounding with a 9.5 rpg clip. Woods is third on the team in scoring with a 9.3 ppg average.
Xavier scored 43 points in the second half to defeat St. John's, 70-60, in Big East action Tuesday. Justin Martin paced the Musketeers in the game with 15 points, followed by Isaiah Philmore and Semaj Christon with 11 points and 10 points, respectively. Philmore added nine rebounds in the contest, while Matt Stainbrook narrowly missed out on a double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds. As a team, Xavier only shot 36.4 percent in the first half, but upped it to 56.5 percent in the second half.
Through 14 games, Christon leads the Musketeers in scoring with a 14.4 ppg average, with Stainbrook not too far behind at 11 ppg. Christon also leads the team in assists (59) and steals (19) this season. Stainbrook is the team leader in rebounding with 8.6 rpg, and also is tops in blocks with 22. The Musketeers as a team are shooting 46.6 percent from the floor this season and average 73.4 ppg.
Both teams are playing well, but Xavier's 9-0 record on its home court is hard to ignore. Give the edge to the Musketeers as they go for their seventh win in a row.
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