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Xavier ousts Ohio State in Gavitt Games clincher

The Big East won the Gavitt Games outright thanks to a big win by the Musketeers.

Ohio State v Xavier Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Xavier scored a massive victory over a longtime in-state adversary.

In their first regular-season meeting in nearly 80 years, the Musketeers ousted the Ohio State Buckeyes in Cincinnati. The 71-65 victory over the Buckeyes clinched the Gavitt Games for the Big East, who would go on to win the whole thing 6-2 following DePaul’s win over Rutgers later that night.

We imagine Musketeer fans are feeling pretty great on this Friday afternoon thanks to this win. The energy in Cintas Center was noticeable from the opening tip-off and the Musketeers ran with it. They prevented Ohio State from ever taking a lead in the game from wire to wire. That type of performance is noteworthy indeed, and will surely be something for X to hang their hat on all season long.

Jack Nunge came off the bench and delivered a scintillating performance. the F7-footer had plenty of experience with tOSU, having played for the Iowa Hawkeyes for three seasons. Nunge picked the Buckeyes apart all night. He scored 14 points and pulled down 14 rebounds, a career-high showing in the latter department. Xavier wrecked tOSU inside, shooting 51.2 percent on 2-point tries.

Paul Scruggs, Nate Johnson, and Adam Kunkel delivered double-figure performances in the win. Scruggs matched Nunge’s output with 14 points, while Johnson scored 12 and Kunkel added 10. Dwon Odom scored eight, and meanwhile, Colby Jones delivered seven. Jones finished with 12 rebounds, as the Musketeers hauled in 43 rebounds on the night with an OR% of 40 percent.

Xavier will look to stay unbeaten when they play Norfolk State on Sunday.