Dante Jackson in Friday's semifinal in Atlantic City.
March 14, 2008
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. - Sophomore forward Jason Love was one rebound shy of a double-double but the Xavier University men's basketball team suffered through a cold-shooting night and fell 61-53 to Saint Joseph's in Atlantic 10 Championship Semifinal action on Friday evening at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J. With the loss, Xavier slips to 27-6 on the year while the Hawks improve to 21-11.
The Musketeers now await their seed and opponent in the 2008 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship. Seeds and pairings will be announced on Sunday, March 16 during the NCAA Selection Show set to air on CBS at 6 p.m.
Senior forward Josh Duncan led the Musketeers with 11 points and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the free throw line. Love was a spotless 5-for-5 from the field and three of his nine rebounds came on the offensive glass. Senior guard Stanley Burrell also finished with 10 points on the night.
Xavier trailed 11-6 after Ahmad Nivins made a lay-up with 12:10 to go but the Musketeers answered and tied the game up at 20-all after Stanley Burrell converted on a lay-up at the five-minute mark.
However, Saint Joe's ended the half on a game-changing 10-0 run and took a 30-20 lead at the break.
The Hawks would not let up and extended their lead to 15 points, 35-20, after Tasheed Carr buried a jumper 1:15 into the second session. Xavier used a 6-0 run late in the second half to cut the Saint Joe's lead to five points, 54-49, after
That was as close as the Musketeers would get though as the Hawks went 4-of-5 from the charity stripe down the stretch to ice it.
XU out-rebounded the Hawks 31-to-23 on the night and the team was 14-for-18 from the free throw line. XU was ice cold from deep though and connected on only 1-for-14 from beyond the 3-point arc.