The Xavier Musketeers move to 6-0 with their 87-77 victory over the USC Trojans in the semifinals of the 2015 Advocare Invitational.
The Musketeers soundly defeated Southern Cal as four Xavier players got into double figures, and 11 Musketeer players scored at least one point on Friday afternoon. Trevon Bluiett led all scorers with 16.
The Musketeers led in nearly every statistical category against USC, leading at one point by 32 points.
Here's what we learned from this impressive victory.
1. When Xavier is clicking, they're really clicking
The best performance of the season for the Musketeers came against the Michigan Wolverines last week. Xavier walked into the Crisler Center in Ann Arbor and laid a beat down on the boards on the Wolverines, en route to a double-digit victory. On Friday, Xavier one-upped that performance with a dominant showing against Southern Cal. X led in field goal percentage, rebounds, defensive rebounds, offensive rebounds, second chance points, bench points, points in the paint, fast break points, blocks and assists and spent 38 minutes and 52 seconds in the lead. The offense was equally dynamic with 11 players registering at least one point. X is an incredible unit when everything is going right, and their best may be yet to come.
2. Xavier continues to bully on the boards
When Xavier beat Michigan in Ann Arbor, the big sticking point was the rebounding battle. Against USC, that trend continued. The Musketeers led by 13 in the rebounding margin, six defensively and seven offensively. Individually, James Farr and Jalen Reynolds combined for 16 on their own, with Farr trumping Reynolds 9-7. No USC player had more than five rebounds as Xavier hounded their opponent on the boards. If these trends continue, Xavier is going to be a force in the Big East Conference and across the board nationally, too.
3. James Farr continues to emerge
The hype was centered in on Jalen Reynolds for good reason this offseason. But 6-foot-10 Evanston, Illinois product James Farr has done nothing but improve steadily this season. Friday was his third double figure performance of the year as he scored 12 points against USC, shooting 5-for-8 from the field with a 2-for-2 mark from the free throw line. The area he continues to dominate in is in rebounding. He grabbed nine on Friday afternoon, which marked the fourth time this season Farr has grabbed at least eight rebounds. Farr's progression this year will be something to watch for but if the early season is any indication, he is going to continue to be a threat down low.