Game Recap: PC Makes it Two Wins in a Row Over NCAA Tournament Teams with 75-63 Win Over Xavier

Providence Friars (16-11) 75

Xavier Musketeers (18-8) 63

The Providence Friars are not only finding their stride at the most opportune time, but they also found the Xavier Musketeers at the most opportune time.  Xavier has lost versatile point guard Edmund Sumner for the season to a torn ACL and was without leading scorer Trevon Blueitt, who was sidelined with a balky ankle.

Now, hopefully, the Musketeers can get Blueitt back in their lineup as quick as possible so that maybe everyone will forget he was out for this game, but either way, it’s a quality win for the Friars.  

This makes it two wins against quality opponents in a row following PC’s win over Butler.  The Friars now face an 8-day stretch of off days before going on the road to face a very good Creighton team, albeit a Creighton team who also lost their starting point guard for the year to an ACL.

The Friars were able to close the Xavier gap to 2 points before halftime and then dominated the second half, at one time extending their lead all the way to 18 points.  The Friars outscored the Musketeers by 14 in the second half behind a balanced scoring attack that included 4 players in double figure scoring an a very good 49.2% field goal percentage as a team.

Quick Hits:

  • The Friars came with a very balanced offensive attack including a great effort from the bench, with 4 guys scoring in double-figures.
  • The real advantage of the game was in the turnover battle.  PC was able to grab 13 steals in the game, contributing to Xavier’s 17 turnovers.  On the flip side, the Friars only had 8 turnovers on the day.  That was able to offset the massive rebounding advantage that Xavier displayed during the game, outrebounding PC 44-29.
  • Kyron Cartwright led the Friars in scoring with 17 points on 6-14 shooting.  Although Cartwright wasn’t on target from distance (0-3 from three), he was able to effect the game in a variety of other ways.
  • Cartwright took down 7 rebounds, handed out 5 assists, and had 3 steals during the game.  He was a factor in every facet of the game in which Xavier was short on ball handlers.  
  • Kyron also has become known for his ability to get a basket at the end of the first half and had his most impressive bucket yet…
  • That was a big basket that brought Providence within 2 points going into halftime.
  • Rodney Bullock had one of his best all-around game in a long time.  Bullock had a double-double with 16 points and a team-high 10 rebounds, his 3rd double-double of the year.
  • Bullock also had 4 assists, 3 blocks, and a steal.  Here’s to hoping this is the start of Rodney Bullock rounding back into shape so we can ride him through the most important part of the schedule.
  • Kalif Young once again got the start but only played 8 minutes in the game.
  • Emmitt Holt came off the bench and played starters minutes at the Center position for the Friars.
  • Holt had a team-high 4 blocks on the day.
  • Emmitt also had my favorite shit-talking display on the year for the Friars.
  • This is the reason why I said that Emmitt was born to play basketball for the Friars. His personality and mentality fit in with this team and its character immediately.  I love the way this kid plays, just a Friar through and through.
  • Jalen Lindsey had an off shooting day, going 4-12 from the floor, but that didn’t seem to effect his 3-point sniper ability as he went 3-7 from deep, finishing with 13 points and 5 rebounds.
  • Alpha Diallo continues to improve with each game, visibly gaining confidence with each minute of playing time.
  • Diallo was 3-7 from the floor for 6 points and used his length to get into passing lanes, swiping 3 steals in the process.  He also is starting to finish with authority which I LOVE to see out of him.
  • Isaiah Jackson may have been the most important player for the Friars in the game.  He is becoming a constant contributor off the bench for this squad.  In 17 minutes of playing time, Jackson had 10 points on 5-7 shooting, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, and 1 assist.
  • Isaiah plays within himself at all times.  He never tries to do something that isn’t in his role or is outside of his ability, which is why he’s so efficient of the bench.  Not to mention, he sneakily might be the best defender on the team.
  • Not matter how much playing time Maliek White gets during the game, he’s going to find a way to get a fastbreak highlight…fact.  That dude is a road runner.
  • I’d also love for someone to tell me how that wasn’t an And-1.
  • I think Maliek is starting to make an argument for being the best finisher on the team.
  • One more fast break highlight for the road runner…
  • I wish Bill Raftery would announce more Friars games.  Just switch the CBS Sports Network games with the awful Gottlieb to Raftery.
  • Rashid Gaston was a force off the bench for Xavier, finishing with 19 points n 8-10 shooting and 14 fucking rebounds.  The Friars are going to have a tough time with versatile big guys who crash the boards hard like Gaston because they are undersized at the 5.  It’s nice that we can basically switch up everything between our 2 to 5 players but it hurts us in rebounding a bit.  Either way, Holt put him in his place with the trash talk so fuck him.
  • It’s confirmed that I still hate Macura.
  • My new favorite thing is the team picture immediately following a win.

  • My favorite part of this one is the Rodney and Alpha mean muggin’ in the front row.

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