Men's Basketball Falls 89-85 to No. 10 George Washington
Feb. 2, 2006
CINCINNATI - Senior center Brian Thornton led five Musketeers in double-figure scoring with 21 points but the Xavier University men's basketball team fell 89-85 to No. 10 George Washington on Thursday evening at Cintas Center. With the loss, XU slips to 13-5 overall and 4-3 in Atlantic 10 play. GW improves to 17-1 on the year, including a spotless 7-0 mark in league action.
Junior forward Justin Doellman joined Thornton in double-figures with 17 points and was a perfect 7-of-7 from the free throw line. Doellman also hauled in a team-high nine rebounds and dropped six dimes.
Xavier led 83-82 after Doellman converted on a driving lay-up at the 1:40 mark. However, GW regained the lead when Maureece Rice drilled a 3-pointer in the corner with 34-seconds remaining to make the score 85-83.
Rice's long-ball marked the eighth and final lead change of the game's last 4:10.
Burrell came down on the ensuing possession and attempted a 3-pointer of his own but it rimmed out with 16-seconds to go and XU was forced to foul. GW was clutch from the charity stripe down the stretch to ice the 89-85 victory.
After leading 53-43 at the half, XU came out flat to start the second half and GW took advantage. The Colonials charged out to a 27-9 run in the first 10:50 of the first half to take a 70-62 lead at the 9:10 mark.
Xavier answered with a 10-2 run and knotted the score up at 72 when Thornton converted on a lay-up at the 5:50 mark.
Xavier shot a solid 50 percent (18-of-36) from the floor in the second half but converted on only 8-of-35 attempts (32 percent) in the second session. XU won the battle of the boards though, out-rebounding GW 44-to-38 on the night and held a 28-to-22 edge on the defensive glass.
22 of XU's 26 field goals came via the assist but the Musketeers tied a season high with 19 turnovers.
Senior guard Dedrick Finn was solid at the point for XU, dishing out a game-high seven assists on the night.
The Musketeers stormed out of the gate and seized an 18-6 lead, on the strength of a 14-1 run, at the 15-minute mark. Burrell capped the run with a 3-pointer and Doellman scored five points during the spurt.
GW clawed back to within five points, 19-14, just two minutes later but XU would have an answer.
Xavier mounted a 15-4 run, featuring seven consecutive points by Burrell, and took a 34-18 lead at the 9:20 mark. Both teams went back-and-forth for the remainder of the first stanza, but Danilo Pinnock banked in a 3-pointer as the first half expired to pull the Colonials within 10 points, 53-43, at the break.
XU's 53 first-half points marked a season high first half scoring total.
XU is back in action on Sunday, February 5 when the team travels to Saint Louis to take on the Billikens. Game time is set for 2:00 p.m.