The Villanova Wildcats regarded unfazed and assured in a hostile setting, taking them to the No. 14 Market Golden Eagles — however then the final six minutes occurred.
Like so many instances all through the season, one other shut recreation slid forwards and backwards away from the Cats in prime time. Villanova narrowly held a four-point lead, till Marquette dominated the ultimate six minutes and pulled forward to win 71–64.
“They did some robust passes down the sector, some offensive rebounds, simply the little issues,” stated Villanova head coach Kyle Neptune. “All through that complete recreation, it was one or two possession video games, it may very well be a rebound, it may very well be a cost, a dive—we have a look at the entire recreation. They are a actually good crew, they made extra performs than us.”
The Wildcats solely had two photographs within the closing eight minutes of motion. Solely a kind of got here throughout Marquette altering the sport and shutting it down 16-3 over the past 6:17 of the sport, a dunk by Caleb Daniels with 10 seconds left, when the sport was already out of attain.
Eric Dixon went 1 of two on the road to provide the Wildcats their closing lead of the sport, 62-61 with 4:47 left. Marquette’s Tyler Kulick put the Golden Eagles forward on their subsequent possession, draining two free throws.
From there, the Cats acquired the chilly shoulder, however remained robust defensively, till Marquette lastly managed to make it a two-possession play and draw back within the closing minute of motion. Villanova was unable to interrupt down the Havoc protection late on, whereas Marquette had the deadlines to seal the win and maintain regular within the Massive East standings.
“They performed tougher, they had been unhealthy,” stated the Neptunes of Marquette’s effort within the second half. “They get into passing lanes, they get just a few swerves. They’re only a robust, unhealthy crew.”
It was a detailed recreation from the beginning, and neither crew led by double digits. The Cats clung on to a 35-34 lead, after Justin Moore buried a three-pointer with lower than 5 seconds left, solely to knock down long-running Cam Jones on the buzzer at halftime.
Along with the chilly capturing of late, the cats had been sentenced to loss of life. They gave the ball 19 instances in loss. Fouls had been additionally a problem, with Cam Whitmore, Brandon Slater and Dixon all dealing with fouls.
“They took the sport, we had different gamers and we had the lead within the first half,” stated the Neptunes. “I assumed we performed higher within the first half, so (a foul situation) did not have any impact.”
Dixon and Daniels led the Cats with 14 factors every. Daniels additionally had 4 boards, three assists and 5 turnovers, whereas Dixon shot 6 of 8, slicing to 6 boards, one help, a steal and 4 turnovers. Brendan Hausen heated off the bench, scoring 12 factors on 3-of-4 capturing from outdoors the arc. Moore had all 9 of his factors within the first half, but additionally completed with 4 rebounds, 4 assists and three turnovers.
For Marquette, Tyler Kolek had 20 factors, with 5 boards, six assists, three steals and solely two turnovers. Cam Jones added 18 factors on 6 of 13 capturing. Oso Ighodaro scored 10 factors, three boards, two steals and a block. Philadelphia native Stevie Mitchell had eight factors, 5 rebounds and two steals.
“They do loads of issues effectively,” Neptune stated of Marquette. “They’ve a bunch of resolution makers, their complete crew makes nice selections. They do not take loads of unhealthy photographs. They share the ball. Defensively, they’re very linked.”
With the loss, Villanova fell to 10-12 general and 4-7 in Massive East play. They may resume their Midwest highway journey in Creighton on Saturday. Info submission is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET.