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Villanova looks to bounce back against Providence

The Wildcats had their eleven-game winning streak snapped. The Friars need to turn their season around. Who will prevail?

NCAA Basketball: Villanova at Providence Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports


Time: 6:30 p.m. ET


Streaming: FOX Sports Go


After dropping their first game since December over the weekend, the Big East leading Villanova Wildcats (19-5, 10-1) return home and look to right the ship against the Providence Friars (14-10, 4-7).

Providence defeated St. John’s at Madison Square Garden over the weekend for one of their biggest victories of the season. The Friars still have work to do, though. A win against Villanova to improve to 5-7 in Big East play could certainly be a step in the right direction. A big key for the Friars will be seeing what they can get out of AJ Reeves. The freshman phenom has been largely restricted in his return from his ankle injury, recording just 24 points in 55 minutes of action over four games since coming back into the fold. Alpha Diallo has been excellent for the Friars this year, but they need consistent secondary scoring (like the 18 they got from Nate Watson in the win over St. John’s) if they’re going to have success against Villanova and over the rest of the season.

Meanwhile, the Wildcats have been the cream of the crop in the Big East this season. They won their first ten games before falling to Marquette in Milwaukee over the weekend, and Phil Booth and Eric Paschall have been two of the best players in the conference. Providence will have to pay particularly close attention to those two, as the two seniors combined for 36 of Villanova’s 65 points and 21 of Nova’s 36 rebounds in the Wildcats’ 65-59 win in Providence on January 5.