Men's Basketball - Sat, Nov. 27, 2004
CHICAGO - Senior guard Phillip Watson scored 13 of his game-high 21 points in the second half to lead the No. 20 ranked Saint Xavier University men's basketball team to a 65-47 win over Purdue University-North Central Saturday in the final day of the SXU Classic at the Shannon Center in Chicago. The Cougars won both of its games in the Classic and improve to 6-1 overall on the season.
Besides Watson, junior guard Jason Reiter (Lemont, Ill./Lemont) and junior forward Jabari Saunders (Joliet, Ill./Joliet Township) also scored in double figures for SXU with 13 points apiece. Senior forward Eric Regan (St. Charles, Ill./Drake University) also had a nice all-around game for the Cougars with eight points and team-highs in rebounds with seven and assists with four. Saint Xavier shot an impressive 52 percent (23-for-44) from the field and had 18 assists and eight blocks.
In the first half, SXU built a double-digit lead early, but Purdue-North Central slowly chipped away at the lead and was able to close within eight, 30-22, at the halftime break. Reiter led the Cougar offensive charge in the first half with 12 points, including three three-pointers, while Watson and Saunders each scored eight. SXU shot 50 percent from the field (11-for-22) in the first half. In the second half, SXU started to pull away early scoring 16 of its 35 points off of Purdue-North Central turnovers.
In the first game of the Classic Saturday, Indiana University-Northwest's DeJuan Eskew scored a team-high 18 points to lead the Redhawks to a 89-83 victory over University of Illinois-Springfield. IU-Northwest had three other players in double figures with Lathaniel Staten and Lamar Long each scoring 16 points and Ryan Brown chipping in 12. UI-Springfield was led by Antonio Puckett with 22 points, while Joe Miller finished with 17 and six rebounds. The Redhawks improve to 5-7 overall with the victory, while Illinois-Springfield falls to 2-6 overall.
Saint Xavier will play University of Illinois-Springfield on Tuesday, November 30, for a regular-season home game at the Shannon Center in Chicago. Game time is set for 7 p.m.