Xavier will shoot for its sixth straight win and second in a row to open Big East Conference play when it hosts Seton Hall on Tuesday night in Cincinnati.
Xavier (9-3, 1-0 Big East) reached the century mark in a 102-89 road win over Georgetown last Friday. Graduate transfer Souley Boum led five Musketeers in double figures with a season-high 28 points.
The sharp-shooting Boum was 8 of 10 from the floor after halftime for 20 second-half points. He connected on a season-high six 3-pointers overall and finished with seven boards, seven assists and four steals.
Jack Nunge had 11 second-half points to finish with 18 points and 12 rebounds for his second double-double of the season.
“Quick turnaround to Seton Hall,” Xavier coach Sean Miller said following his first time coaching in a Big East conference game. “You want to be better defensively on Tuesday. Because I’m going to tell you there’s going to be a game where we don’t make shots. You can’t make them every game.
“What’s going to happen on that night? We’re just not going to win? You have to be able to get better.”
Seton Hall (7-5, 0-1) is coming off a disappointing 71-67 home loss to Providence on Saturday.
Despite a career-high 28 points from junior Kadary Richmond, the Pirates couldn’t hold a nine-point halftime lead and a three-point advantage with less than six minutes remaining.
Al-Amir Dawes missed a potential game-tying 3 in the closing seconds.
“He had a good look,” Seton Hall coach Shaheen Holloway said. “I thought Kadary did a good job getting in the lane creating. He caused a lot of people to come towards him and we got one of our better shooters a good look. That’s all you could ask for.”
Seton Hall starting guard Femi Odukale, a defensive specialist, sat out Saturday’s game after spraining an ankle in Wednesday’s win over Drexel and is a game-time decision against Xavier.
“I thought we missed Femi just because he’s a good defender, another guy that could create some offense, and I thought his offense is coming along,” Holloway said. “I thought his confidence was coming back, and we miss him. We need him back. I hope we have him back sooner rather than later.”
–Field Level Media