New York NY: The four best teams in the Big East Conference would go to battle at Madison Square Garden in New York on Friday Night. The first game featured Villanova Wildcats taking on Xavier Musketeers. Villanova made the semifinals with a win over Providence while Xavier heads to battle with the Wildcats off a win over Creighton.
Xavier would open the scoring with basket & Foul for a 3-0 lead, Bey would get the Wildcats on the board. Both teams would struggle to make their shots. At one point, Xavier would have a 10 point lead at 33-23 with 2:34 left in the half. The Wildcats would go on a run and cut the Xavier lead down to 6 at 34-28.
Xavier took a 34-28 lead into halftime and they had everything going for them and Villanova did not know what Xavier was doing.
In the 2nd half, The Wildcats would come out and make things interesting as they would cut the Xavier lead down to 2 at 45-43 with 10:31 left. Xavier would grow the lead to 7 at 55-48 with 4:46 left and the Wildcats would fight their way back to tie the game at 58 on tip-in from Eric Pascall with 6 seconds left.
Eric Paschall Tip-in
The game would head to overtime tied at 58. In the overtime, Villanova would get their second wind and just make things very difficult for Xavier. The Wildcats would grind out a 71-67 win to move to the final of the Big East Tournament for the 5th straight year in a row.
The Scene at MSG:
Villanova will now take on the winner of Marquette vs Seton Hall in the championship game tomorrow at 6 PM.
Phil Booth: 28 points, 7 rebounds
Jermaine Samuels: 17 points, 9 rebounds
Eric Paschall: 12 points, 5 rebounds
Paul Scruggs: 28 points, 11 rebounds
Zach Hankins: 18 points, 6 rebounds
Tyrique Jones: 8 points, 5 rebounds
Villanova Coach Jay Wright:
Villanova Eric Paschall:
Villanova Phil Booth:
Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
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