Bearcats Fall In Crosstown Classic|
Dec. 14, 2013
CINCINNATI -The University of Cincinnati men's basketball team could not overcome a slow offensive start and dropped the annual Skyline Chili Crosstown Classic to Xavier, 64-47, at U.S. Bank Arena on Saturday night. The loss dropped the Bearcats to 7-2 while the Musketeers improved to 8-3.
Sean Kilpatrick (Yonkers, N.Y./White Plains/Notre Dame Prep) led the UC effort with 17 points. Shaquille Thomas (Patterson, N.J./NIA Prep) contributed 13 points. Troy Caupain (Midlothian, Va./Cosby) and Kevin Johnson (Cincinnati, Ohio/Summit Country Day) each posted five points for the Bearcats.
Xavier was led by 17 points from Justin Martin, who also grabbed five rebounds. James Farr scored 10 points and pulled down six rebounds. Semaj Christon and Brandon Randolph each scored eight points, while Matt Stainbrook had seven points and 11 rebounds.
The Bearcats got off to a slow start offensively, hitting just three of their first 10 shots. Xavier took advantage, using a 17-4 run to take a 33-14 lead with just over four minutes remaining, including a 9-0 run over just 63 seconds.
UC was able to start closing the gap late in the first half, with a Kilpatrick three cutting it to 41-25 at the break. Cincinnati hit three of its last four shots in the period. In the opening half, Xavier shot 65-percent (13-20) from the field and 67-percent (6-9) from three. The Bearcats forced 10 Musketeer turnovers to stay within striking distance despite shooting just 32-percent (8-25).
Cincinnati began to claw its way back at the start of the second half. Just over five minutes in to the half, a pair of Kilpatrick free throws cut the deficit to 12, 48-36, and forced a Musketeer timeout. Another pair of Kilpatrick foul shots cut it to 48-38 with 13:24 to play, but that would be the closest the Bearcats could get.
Xavier took the momentum back by holding UC off the scoreboard for the next 2:56 while going on a 9-0 run to push the lead back to 19, 57-38, with 9:45 to play. The Bearcats would go over five minutes without a point before a three from Caupain ended the drought with 6:35 to play and Xavier leading 59-41.
The Musketeers then held on for the 64-47 victory. Xavier outshot UC, 56-percent to 33-percent, while hitting 11-of-16 from three-point range. The Musketeers also won the battle on the glass by a 33-20 margin.
The loss cuts UC's lead in the series, which has been continuous since 1945, to 49-32. It also marks the Bearcats first loss at U.S. Bank Arena in downtown Cincinnati since Jan. 16, 1997. UC had won 18 consecutive games at U.S. Bank.
Next up for UC is a trip to Madison Square Garden to face former conference foe Pittsburgh in the Jimmy V Classic. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. in the world's most famous arena and the game can be seen on ESPN.