NEW YORK – (Staff Report from Official News Release) – BIG EAST teams compiled a 7-0 record on Saturday that included rivalry game wins, two victories over previously unbeaten squads and three wins on the road. Going into Sunday’s games, BIG EAST teams have a combined record of 73-19 (79 percent).
St. John’s and Georgetown beat unbeaten squads. In a BIG EAST/Big 12 Battle, the Johnnies edged West Virginia 70-68 at Madison Square Garden. Rasheem Dunn scored nine of his 13 points in the second half, including two free throws with five seconds left. L.J. Figueroa scored a team-high 17 points. WVU had started 7-0.
Georgetown went 2-0 on its trip to the Southwest after a 91-74 win at SMU, which was 8-0 going into the contest. The Hoyas blew out of the gates with a 20-2 start. Jahvon Blair came off the bench to score a career-high 21 points, all on 3-pointers.
In addition to the Hoyas, the road warriors were Marquette and Villanova. In a BIG EAST-Big 12 Battle, the Golden Eagles built a 14-point lead in the second half at Kansas State and went back to Milwaukee with a 73-65 win. Markus Howard scored 19 points and Jamal Cain provided a huge lift off the bench with 17 points and nine rebounds. Villanova led by 16 in the second half, then held on at Saint Joseph’s to win 78-66. Saddiq Bey led the way with 22 points and nine rebounds.
Xavier won the hotly-contested Crosstown Shootout 73-66 over Cincinnati. Naji Marshall tied a career high with 31 points and added eight rebounds and five steals. The Musketeers led by as many as 16 points in the second half.
In the other local rivalry, Creighton had little trouble with Nebraska in a 95-76 victory. Marcus Zegarowski had a monster game with 30 points, nine rebounds and six assists. Ty-Shon Alexander chipped in 22 points. The Bluejays started fast and led 37-7.
Butler used a balance scoring attack in a 76-62 win over Florida at a jammed Hinkle Fieldhouse. Sean McDermott and Aaron Thompson each scored 16 points. Jordan Tucker had 13 points and Kamar Baldwin added 11.
Sunday’s schedule doesn’t start until 5 p.m. ET when 9-0 DePaul hosts Buffalo on FS1. In another BIG EAST-Big 12 Battle, Seton Hall plays at Iowa State at 9 p.m. on ESPN2. The Pirates and the Cyclones met in their last game, an 84-76 Pirate win in the Battle for Atlantis tournament.