Tomorrow at 7:00pm, Xavier takes their first step into single elimination tournament play. Behind Henry Ellenson and almost no defense at all, it was Marquette who kept their season alive against a very game St. John's squad tonight. You can say a lot about where SJU is headed and whether Chris Mullin belongs on a college sideline, but you can't question the effort that gave this evening in coming up just a bit short in yet another game marred by incessant foul calls and look at me moments for the referees.
"I think the officiating in these two games has been awful...it's been horrible." - A totally correct and legitimately angry Gus Johnson.— Banners on the Park (@BannersParkway) March 10, 2016
After the officials called the final of the 53 fouls that they, and only they, saw, a very entertaining game ended 101-93 for the Golden Eagles. Hannif Cheatham went down hard near the end of the game and no reports are out yet on whether he was injured or just shaken up.
In two outings this year Xavier beat Marquette 74-66 and 90-82. The Musketeers buried the game at Marquette early and cruised home, but waited until the final ten minutes in the meeting at home to outscore the Golden Eagles by 13 and secure the win. Of middling concern for the Musketeers is the fact that tonight Marquette shot a cool 55.8% from the floor tonight. By this time tomorrow we'll know whether the Golden Eagles stayed hot or Xavier is cruising into the semifinals.