Providence, RI (SportsNetwork.com) - Bryce Cotton had a game-high 25 points and seven assists, as the Providence Friars earned an 81-72 win over the Xavier Musketeers in a Big East Conference tilt at the Dunkin' Donuts Center.
LaDontae Henton recorded a double-double with 23 points and 11 rebounds to help the Friars (15-5, 5-2 Big East) improve to 11-1 at home. Kadeem Batts and Tyler Harris both scored 12 points and combined for 14 rebounds in the win.
Justin Martin had a team-high 19 points to go along with seven rebounds for the Musketeers (15-5, 5-2), who entered the day with wins in 10 of their previous 11 contests. Semaj Christon chipped in with 18 points, while Matt Stainbrook tallied 11 points and nine boards in a losing effort.
Providence claimed a 35-31 halftime lead despite shooting just 29.4 percent from the floor in the opening frame, as it held an 11-3 scoring advantage at the foul line.
The Friars' offense picked up in the second stanza with a 64-percent shooting effort, including 4-of-7 efficiency from beyond the arc, to notch the victory.
The Providence bench contributed only two points, as head coach Ed Cooley rode his starters for virtually the whole game.