EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) Scottie Lindsey might soon crack the starting lineup. For now, he's focused on his role as a sixth man.
''The coaches tell me every day that I've got to be ready to play coming off the bench,'' he said. ''I've got to be a spark.''
That certainly was the case Saturday night.
Lindsey had 15 of his 26 points in the second half and Tre Demps added 16 to lead Northwestern to a 90-63 rout of New Orleans on Saturday night.
Lindsey was 9 for 12 from the field, including 6 of 7 on 3-pointers, as Northwestern (5-1) won its second straight. His previous high was 12 points twice last season.
''Scottie was tremendous,'' Northwestern coach Chris Collins said. ''I don't know if he's going to get 26 every night, but him just giving us that scoring punch is really big for our team.
''I've said all along he's a big x-factor for us. When he's rolling like that, it makes us that much more dangerous of a team.''
Nate Frye had 14 points and Cameron Reed had 13 to lead New Orleans (2-3), which never seriously threatened after the break. The closest the Privateers got was 50-29 early in the second half.
The Wildcats defense focused on New Orleans' Christavious Gill, who entered averaging 13.8 points but was held to three points on 0-for-7 shooting.
Bryant McIntosh had 13 points and seven assists, Gavin Skelly 10 points and Alex Olah six blocks for Northwestern.
New Orleans stayed close early despite Demps scoring the Wildcats' first 10 points of the game. But Northwestern broke the game open with 13 straight points for a 27-12 advantage with just over 10 minutes left before halftime.
Lindsey got the run started with a 3-pointer. Demps, who had 14 points in the first half, capped it with a jumper.
The Wildcats, who were 18 for 31 (58.1 percent) from the field in the first half, led by as many as 24 points and took a 48-25 lead into the locker room.
''I felt real good,'' Lindsey said. ''My teammates found me for some open threes early. My shot was feeling good, so I kept being aggressive.''
New Orleans: Coach Mark Slessinger still is looking for his 50th win with the Privateers. He is 49-69 in five seasons. . The Privateers are playing six of their first seven games on the road.
Northwestern: Demps moved into a tie for 26th place (with Mark Sibley) on the school's all-time scoring list with 1,113 career points. Demps needs 10 points to move into 24th place.
Northwestern has never made the NCAA tournament, but the last week had a March Madness feel. The Wildcats lost by 11 to North Carolina on Monday before bouncing back to beat Missouri on Tuesday.
''We've just shown that we can play with a lot of teams,'' Lindsey said. ''Our team is very confident right now. We just want to keep it going.''
New Orleans plays at Tulane on Wednesday.
Northwestern plays at Virginia Tech on Tuesday.