Big East Basketball Wrap-Up: Notre Dame, USF, West Virginia Win, No. 10 Marquette Falls On Monday

The Big East went 3-1 in their four-pack of games on Monday night. The South Florida Bulls, West Virginia Mountaineers and Notre Dame Fighting Irish won easily. The surprise was the only loss of the night. The previously undefeated No. 10 Marquette Golden Eagles lost in Baton Rouge to the LSU Tigers, 67-59.

LSU 67, No. 10 Marquette 59: Marquette started off well enough with a 13-0 run at through 16:30 mark of the first half. The Golden Eagles would be held to just 10 more points the rest of the half while LSU went on a 26-10 run. The scoreline remained tight late into the second half. Marquette couldn't make their shots down the stretch while LSU buried their free throws. LSU was only 14-27 from the free throw line for the game, but was 9-11 from the stripe (Justin Hamilton was 7-8) in the final 1:20 of the game. Jae Crowder led Marquette with 22 points and 9 rebounds. Darius Johnson-Odom, fresh off a one-game suspension, was the only other Golden Eagle in double figures with 16 points. Ralston Turner led the Tigers with 22 points (4-5 from behind the arc).

USF 70, Cleveland State 55: As unexpected as Marquette's loss was, this was a game we didn't think the Bulls could win. Cleveland State entered with an 10-1 record and a five-game win streak. South Florida head coach Stan Heath had a more interesting way to describe Jawanza Poland's 13 point (3-5 from three-point), 5 rebound night than we can:

"He's one of those guys that's a rhythm guy," Heath said. "Once Jawanza gets going, he's like that heater in the basement - he gets hot and starts throwing steam out." (via Tampa Bay.com)

In his first game this season, Poland came off the bench and led USF in scoring. After a close first half, Cleveland State was put away midway through the second half as the Bulls shot 65% in the second frame. Despite losing the rebounding battle, USF had a 22-6 advantage in free throws and outscored the Vikings 28-26 in the paint. Ron Anderson Jr., Augustus Gilchrist and Anthony Collins also reached double figures in scoring for the Bulls.

West Virginia 72, Tennessee Tech 53: Kevin Jones, the Big East's second-leading scorer and rebounder, led the Mountaineers with 25 points and 14 rebounds on Monday. Deniz Kilicli and Darryl Bryant also scored in double figures for West Virginia. Tennessee Tech hung around for the first seven minutes of the game. The Mountaineers erased the Golden Eagles' 8-7 lead with a 15-5 run over the next six minutes of the first half. West Virginia led the rest of the way and put the game out of reach with a 17-5 run in the second half. Tennessee Tech only hit one of their 15 three-point attempts and trailed 24-19 in free throw attempts.

Notre Dame 106, Sacred Heart 65: After a 48-point first half, the Irish followed with a 58-point second half in a blowout over Sacred Heart. Notre Dame had a huge free throw advantage, 34-15. Jack Cooley led Notre Dame with 19 points (7-7 from the field) and 8 rebounds. Every player Notre Dame used in the game scored at least five points. Sacred Heart's Shane Gibson led all scorers with 22 points. Sacred Heart held a 30-23 lead at the 7:18 mark in the first half. Notre Dame erased it with a 25-7 run to end the first half. The Irish shot 61.4% for the game and outscored the Pioneers 58-28 in the second half.

There are four Big East games on the schedule tonight: Bucknell at No. 1 Syracuse (7 p.m., TV: ESPNU); St. Francis (PA) at No. 14 Pitt (ESPN3); New Hampshire at Providence (7 p.m., ESPN3); Charleston at No. 4 Louisville (9 p.m., TV: ESPNU)

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