Everyone loves a good underdog story, until they are the favorite. Xavier’s place in the college basketball world is no longer that of the plucky upstarts, but as a ruthless machine, rolling over the minnows the early season brings them. Tonight, Morehead State were the minnows and Xavier duly dispatched them with a relentless offensive attack which netted them their highest point total in 5 years.
Every season begins with some level of uncertainty as the old guard seeks to mesh with the new blood being introduced to the team. Tonight, Xavier started 5 returners and they staked the Musketeers to a 33-5 lead by 10:29 before Morehead could catch their bearings in the game. Senior tandem Trevon Bluiett and JP Macura led Xavier in the first half, combining for 34 points to Morehead’s 24 as a team. An 11-14 barrage from three was the fuel for Xavier’s early success and 17 assists on 22 made field goals was evidence of the ball movement taking place early on. Quentin Goodin in particular came up with 6 assists without taking a shot in the first 20 minutes. Kaiser Gates added 9 on 3-3 from deep as 8 Musketeers got on the board in the first half.
In the second half, both Xavier and the game itself lost a bit of steam as the offense became a bit more dribble-centric and Morehead became more and more resigned to their collective fate. Xavier cracked 100 points for the first time since 2012 and the season was off and running with an emphatic win.