There were four games involving Big East teams on Wednesday. The Cincinnati Bearcats, South Florida Bulls, Villanova Wildcats and West Virginia Mountaineers all won.
Cincinnati 70, No. 11 UConn 67: It is hard to describe this win as an upset for Cincinnati although it technically was based on the teams' rankings. The Bearcats are now 5-1 in Big East play while UConn is a pedestrian 4-3. At the half, Cincy led 42-33 and seemed to be in control. However, Big East road games are not often easy to win. UConn had the score tied at 50 before the halfway mark in the second half. Just when the Bearcats thought they were pulling away late, the Huskies fought back and tied the game at 67 with 10 seconds left. Sean Kilpatrick's three-pointer with three seconds made the difference. Niels Giffey got hit back rim on a last ditch three-point effort to tie the game again. Kilpatrick finished with 16 points to lead Cincy. Yancy Gates had a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds. UConn's Shabazz Napier led all scorers with 27 points. Jeremy Lamb chipped in 14 points for the Huskies.
South Florida 64, St. John's 49: The South Florida Bulls are 4-2 in Big East play for the first time since they joined the conference. Victor Rudd was a big reason in the second half of last night's game. Rudd scored all 24 of his points in the second half, including this monster dunk over God`sgift Achiuwa. After leading by seven points in the first half, the Bulls put away the Johnnies early in the second half. USF had not beaten St. John's since 1995. The Bulls got the win on the strength of hot shooting from behind the arc (8-16) and outrebounding the Red Storm. South Florida was led by the 24 points of Rudd and also got 16 points from Jawanza Poland. God`sgift Achiuwa, Maurice Harkless and Phil Greene reached double figures in scoring for St. John's.
Villanova 84, Seton Hall 76: Seton Hall kept hoisting up three-pointers against Villanova in the first half even though they weren't falling. The whole team missed their three-point attempts except for Brandon Mobley who was 3-3 from behind the arc. Seton Hall eventually finished 12-36 from behind the arc, but the gap 9-point Villanova created by halftime was too much too overcome for the Pirates. Villanova beat the Pirates on the boards but turned the ball over 16 times which allowed Seton Hall extra opportunities to hang around. Villanova's Maalik Wayns was only 5-13 from the floor but hit 15-16 free throws to lead all scorers with 25 points. JayVaughn Pinkston chipped in 23 points for Villanova and James Bell had 18 points. Fuquan Edwin led the Pirates with 14 points and 9 rebounds. Jordan Theodore had 13 points and 8 assists for the Pirates.
West Virginia 78, Marshall 62: After one half, the score was tied at 30. Time to panic for the Mountaineers on the road? Not when you have the Big East's leading scorer and rebounder in Kevin Jones. Jones scored 18 of his game-high 25 points in the second half. The Mountaineers started to pull away from the Thundering Herd with a 10-0 run before pushing the game out of reach with a 12-2 run later in the half. One key element of the win was that West Virginia outrebounded Marshall, which came into the game as one of the best rebounding teams in the country. West Virginia also had a huge 22-6 advantage at the free throw line and outscored the Thundering Herd by 14 at the charity stripe. The margin of victory was the largest for the Mountaineers since the series moved to Charleston in 1992. Darryl Bryant scored 22 points for West Virginia. Marshall was led by 19 points from DeAndre Kane and 15 points from Damier Pitts.
There are no games involving Big east teams tonight. League play resumes on Saturday with 7 games.