NEW YORK – (Staff Report from Official News Release) – The Villanova Wildcats, ranked eighth in the AP poll this week and 10th in USA Today, meet St. John’s at Madison Square Garden at 6:30 p.m. ET tonight. Both teams are coming off road wins this past Saturday. Villanova won 64-60 at Providence while St. John’s defeated DePaul 79-66.
Villanova (16-3, 6-1 BIG EAST) continues to feature a balanced scoring attack with five players averaging in double figures. Collin Gillespie is the leader with a 15.1 mark. Saddiq Bey is right behind at 14.9. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, who has been the BIG EAST Freshman of the Week for the last three weeks, is averaging close to a double-double with 11.2 points and 9.4 rebounds. St. John’s (13-8, 2-6) is the only BIG EAST team to defeat Villanova in each of the past two seasons. The Johnnies’ L.J. Figueroa made seven 3-pointers while tallying a career-high 28 points Saturday at DePaul and Mustapha Heron added 20 points. Heron has averaged 18.7 points over this last three games.
Butler heads to Georgetown after a dramatic 89-85 overtime home win against Marquette on Friday. The Bulldogs’ Kamar Baldwin had only two points in the first half, but finished with 31 in the win at Hinkle Fieldhouse. He was named BIG EAST Player of the Week on Monday. Butler is ranked 16th in AP and 17th in USA Today.
Georgetown has not played since a 66-57 loss at Xavier last Wednesday. The Hoyas (12-7, 2-4) rank second in the BIG EAST in scoring, averaging 77.9 points while Butler (16-4, 4-3) is first in scoring defense (59.4). The Hoyas have two wins against ranked teams this season, knocking off Creighton and Texas. They have won four of their last six against ranked squads under coach Patrick Ewing.
Home teams are 23-14 (.642) in league games going into Tuesday.