PROVIDENCE, R.I. – In a game that featured 15 ties, 13 lead changes, a buzzer beater and a water-related delay through three overtimes, Xavier men’s basketball battled, but fell 99-92 at No. 11 Providence on Wednesday evening.
Xavier led for much fo the first half before going into the break tied. Providence moved ahead in the second half but the Musketeers responded to lead late before a late surge by the Friars following a delay due to water leaking from the ceiling put the game in the tie and sent it to overtime. The Musketeers held the early advantage in overtime, but each time Xavier pushed to a multiple possession lead, the Friars responded, holding a three-point lead in the closing second of the second overtime before a Paul Scruggs buzzer-beating three forced the third overtime. In the final overtime, the Friars took control, pushing out to its largest lead of the game in the final minutes.
Adam Kunkel’s 20 points to lead six Musketeers in double figures. Paul Scruggs added 19 for the Musketeers and Zach Freemantle had 15 points. Colby Jones and Jack Nunge each finished with a double-double and Dwon Odom also had 11 points as the Musketeers moved to 17-10 overall and 7-9 in BIG EAST play.
FIRST HALF RECAP
- Xavier took an early four point lad, 6-2, and held the advantage until the Friars tied it up at 10-10 with 13:21 to play.
- The Friars moved in front before Xavier scored six unanswered to retake the lead. The musketeers would lead by as many five, 22-17 during the next five minutes.
- The Musketeers maintained the advantage, leading by as many as six, 30-24, with under four to play in the first half.
- The two teams traded baskets over the final 3:32 of the half, with PC scoring the final four points to go into the half tied 36-36.
- Zach Freemantle led the Musketeers with 10 points in the first half.
- Xavier had a 15-10 advantage on the boards, led by four for Jack Nunge.
- The Musketeers shot 51.9 percent from the floor but connected on just one of six threes.
SECOND HALF RECAP
- Xavier opened the second half with a 6-0 run to take a 42-36 less than two minutes into the half.
- Providence responded with a 7-0 run to take its first lead of the game at 43-42 with 15:20 to play.
- The two teams traded five-point swings, with Xavier leading 47-43 before the Friars went ahead 48-47.
- After falling behind by five, Adam Kunkel hit a pair of threes to put the Musketeers back in fron 53-48 with 11 minutes to play.
- Xavier maintained the lead until the the five minute mark when PC went on a 7-3 run to tie the game.
- The Musketeers and Friars traded baskets and one-point leads until a Dwon Odom bucket gave the Musketeers a three-point lead, 66-63, with 2:43 left in regulation.
- Following a lengthy delay due to water on the floor, Connecticut scored four straight to go back ahead.
- Jack Nunge and Zach Freemantle each hit a basket, but a PC free throw and basket put the game in a 70-70 tie at the end of 40 minutes.
- Adam Kunkel had 13 points in the second half to lead the Musketeers.
- Each team grabbed 18 rebounds with Jack Nunge’s five leading the Musketeers.
- Xavier led by as many as five in the first overtime, with Zach Freemantle scoring three and Jack Nunge adding two before Providence scored five straight to tie it a 75-75 and send it to second overtime.
- Providence scored the first four points in the second overtime before Paul Scruggs went on a personal 4-0 run to tie the game at 79-79, with the Musketeers going ahead by two.
- The Friars would retake a three point lead, holding on to it into the final 10 second before Paul Scruggs hit a three at the buzzer to send it to a third overtime, 88-88.
- Providence hit the first basket in the third overtime and never relinquished the lead, taking the 99-92 win.
- Paul Scruggs had 13 points during the overtime period, going 4-of-5 from the floor.
- PC finished with a 13-12 advantage on the boards in three overtime periods.
- Adam Kunkel led the Musketeers with 20 points, connecting on four three pointers.
- Paul Scruggs added 19 points, including 13 in the overtime periods.
- Zach Freemanle scored 15 points, leading the Musketeers in the first half with 10 points.
- Colby Jones finished with a double double, scoring 14 points and grabbing a team-high 11 rebounds.
- Jack Nunge also finished with a double double, with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
- Dwon Odom also had 11 points for the Musketeers.
- Xavier finished with a 45-41 advantage on the boards.
- The Musketeers shot 41.8 percent from the floor for the game while Providence shot 48.5 percent.
- The three-overtime game was the first overtime game for the Musketeers this season. It matches the most overtimes in school history. The last time XU went to three overtimes was in the 2010-11 season with the Musketeers beat Wofford 94-90 on Nov. 27, 2010 at Cintas Center
COURTESY XAVIER ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS