Xavier ready to throw balanced attack at Southeastern Louisiana
The Xavier Musketeers will return home on Wednesday night to take on the Southeastern Louisiana Lions in Cincinnati.
Xavier (4-3) is coming off an 88-84 loss to No. 6 Gonzaga on Sunday in the Phil Knight Legacy tournament. Graduate student Jack Nunge led Xavier with 25 points while graduate student Souley Boum earned a spot on the All-Tournament team after leading the Musketeers in scoring, averaging 18.3 points for the three games.
Boum is also second on the team in scoring (15.9 points per game) and assists (3.7 per game) for the season.
Xavier has a balanced scoring attack, featuring five players averaging point totals in double figures. Nunge leads the way at 16.3 points per game, with Boum, Colby Jones (15.7 ppg), Zach Freemantle (13.4 ppg) and Adam Kunkel (11.5 ppg) trailing close behind.
After beating Florida in the tournament opener, the Musketeers had leads over No. 8 Duke and No. 6 Gonzaga, including a 71-63 lead Sunday with just over six minutes to play. But Gonzaga outscored Xavier 25-13 to close the game to capture third place in the tournament.
"With Gonzaga, you have to give them credit," Xavier head coach Sean Miller said. "They're America's best offensive team. They're No. 1. That scoring efficiency. To be fair, I would look at the last four games. Obviously, we were playing against some really good teams, good programs. Our defense is below average. We have a long, long way to go. I do think there's a number of things we can improve on."
Southeastern has already made history this season. Their 4-3 record includes a road upset of Wyoming and matches their best start since the 2017-18 season. Also, by coming from 20 points down against Campbell with 4:58 left in regulation, they completed the biggest comeback with under five minutes remaining in NCAA history.
Roscoe Eastmond, Christian Agnew and Donte Houston Jr. all reached career highs in points as the Lions cruised to a 96-62 home win over NAIA school William Carey on Saturday.
Eastmond scored a game-high 20 points, while Agnew had 19 and Houston finished with 15.
--Field Level Media