Cincinnati - The West Virginia Mountaineers (6-2) were outlasted by the Xavier Musketeers (5-3) Saturday night 84-74.
Xavier jumped out to an early 4-0 advantage before forward Emmitt Matthews Jr. put the Mountaineers on the board with a three off the left wing, igniting an 11-2 run and WVU held an 11-6 lead after a little over three minutes of play.
A 5-0 spurt by the Musketeers had them within one but Erik Stevenson ended the momentum, then forward Tre Mitchell hit a three and Mattews capped off the 8-0 run with a drive down the left side of the lane and WVU was up nine, 21-12, at the 13:27 mark of the first half.
Xavier chipped away at the West Virginia lead, getting within three, but, again, Stevenson drilled his third three of the first half and sparing another 8-0 spurt and WVU held its largest lead of the half 41-30 with 2:42 left to play.
The Musketeers responded with six consecutive points but Stevenson kiss a leaning jumper off the glass 14 first half points and giving the Mountaineers a 43-36 lead at the break.
Xavier steadily began its comeback on the second half and the Musketeers took their first lead of the game since the opening minutes of the game, 56-55, with 13:32 remaining in the game. However, West Virginia guard Seth Wilson answered with a three, reclaiming the Mountaineer lead.
The two traded buckets until West Virginia was held to just six points in the last seven minutes of the game while Xavier put up 17 during that span as the Musketeers rolled to a 84-74 victory.
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