There were six Big East basketball games on Saturday. If you missed the controversial end in the game between the No. 3/4 Syracuse Orange and the West Virginia Mountaineers, click here. In the other games: the St. John's Red Storm fell to No. 6 Duke, the No. 10 Georgetown Hoyas fell to the Pittsburgh Panthers, the No. 18 Marquette Golden Eagles defeated the Villanova Wildcats, the No. 25 Louisville Cardinals defeated the Seton Hall Pirates and the Rutgers Scarlet Knights defeated the Cincinnati Bearcats.
No. 6 Duke 83, St. John's 76: The Blue Devils led the Red Storm 45-29 at halftime and held off a furious comeback attempt by the Johnnies. What made the difference at the half is that Duke was 6-11 from behind the arc while St. John's was 0-6. In the second half, St. John's was 5-10 on their three-point attempts while Duke was only 1-8 and made 7 just shots from the field. Duke was able to hold off St. John's by making 23 of their 27 free throw attempts in the second half. Duke held a 42-21 advantage for the game at the charity stripe and outscored the Red Storm by 21 at the line. Duke was led by 16 points from Ryan Kelly who made 10-12 from the line. Mason Plumlee had a double-double for the Blue Devils with 15 points and 17 rebounds. St. John's was led by Maurice Harkless' eighth double-double of the season. He had 30 points and 13 rebounds. D`Angelo Harrison was the only other Red Storm player in double figures with 21 points.
Pitt 72, No. 10 Georgetown 60: Georgetown only shot 33.3% in the first half and found themselves down 33-22 at the break to Pitt. The Hoyas played much better in the second half but couldn't overcome the big first half deficit. The closest Georgetown got was down 55-49 with 5:04 to play, but Pitt pulled away at that point. After starting off Big East play 0-7, Pitt has won their last two games. Pitt's zone stifled the Hoyas' offense and allowed them to dominate the boards, 35-23. The Panthers continue to lead the Big East with a double digit rebound margin. The Panthers were led by 23 points from Nasir Robinson (9-9 from the field) and 18 points from Lamar Patterson. Tray Woodall was only 1-7 from the floor but dished out 10 assists. Georgetown was led by 14 points from Otto Porter. Hollis Thompson and Henry Sims were the only other players to reach double figures in scoring for Georgetown.
No. 18 Marquette 82, Villanova 78: Marquette's sixth Big East win in a row didn't come easy. The Golden Eagles could only manage to shoot 35.5% in the first half and trailed 46-36. Considering they were down 23-7 with 12:18 to play, it was amazing they were only down 10 points at the half. With 12:21 to play in the second half, the score was tied at 55. Villanova held at 69-65 lead with 6:15 to play when Villanova's Maalik Wayns was given a technical foul for saying something after a call. Marquette responded with an 8-0 run and never lost the lead. The Golden Eagles hit their free throws late to seal the win. Marquette was led by a game-high 26 points from Darius Johnson-Odom. Jae Crowder had 20 points and 11 boards for the Golden Eagles. Reigning Big East Rookie of the Week JayVaughn Pinkston led Villanova with 17 points. Three other Wildcats scored in double figures.
No. 25 Louisville 60, Seton Hall 51: The wheels are coming off for Seton Hall. They've now lost four Big East games in a row and were ice cold from the field again (27.6%). The Pirates did make a comeback in the second half but couldn't take the lead. The Pirates forced Louisville into an astounding 24 turnovers but only got 23 points from them. Seton Hall also squandered their chances from the free throw line, as they went 16-27. The Cards are trending in the opposite direction with their third win in a row. Louisville was led by 14 points from Russ Smith. Gorgui Dieng, who had 5 blocks, turned out another double-double for Louisville with 11 points and 14 rebounds. Seton Hall got 12 points and 12 rebounds from Herb Pope who had struggled recently. Seton Hall's Jordan Theodore led all scorers with 18 points.
Rutgers 61, Cincinnati 54: Rutgers head coach Mike Rice picked up his 100th career win on Saturday when the Scarlet Knights defeated Cincinnati for the first time since 2007. The Scarlet Knights are proving to be a tough team to beat at the RAC this season. Rutgers dominated the paint and outscored Cincy 30-12. The Scarlet Knight defense held the Bearcats to 35.7% shooting. Cincinnati recovered from a 27-23 deficit at the half to take a 30-27 lead in the second half. Rutgers used a 17-5 run to put the game away. Rutgers got 17 points from Eli Carter, 15 of which came in the second half. Dane Miller scored 10 points and hauled down 12 rebounds for Rutgers. Dion Dixon, Yancy Gates and Sean Kilpatrick scored in double figures for Cincinnati.
There are two Big East basketball games today: Notre Dame at No. 19 Connecticut (12 p.m., TV: ESPN3) and Providence at South Florida (2 p.m., TV: ESPN3). Ryan Boatright has been cleared to play for UConn.