Olivier-Maxence Prosper scored on a tip-in with 1.6 seconds remaining to keep No. 11 Marquette atop the Big East with a 69-68 victory over 16th-ranked Xavier on Wednesday night in Milwaukee.
Jack Nunge scored underneath to put Xavier up 68-67 with 8.3 seconds left. Kam Jones missed on a drive on the ensuing possession but Prosper followed with the go-ahead tap.
Marquette pulled within 66-65 with 29 seconds left when Stevie Mitchell’s steal led to a dunk by Prosper. Xavier turned it over again and Oso Ighodaro hit two free throws to put the Golden Eagles up 67-66.
Mitchell had 17 points for Marquette (21-6, 13-3 Big East), picked ninth in the preseason conference poll. Tyler Kolek added 15 points and Ighodaro had 14 points and a team-high nine rebounds.
Souley Boum had 24 points for Xavier (19-7, 11-4), which dropped into a second-place tie with No. 18 Creighton and No. 24 Providence. Colby Jones added 13 points and Nunge and Jerome Hunter 10 for the Musketeers, who had beaten Marquette 80-76 in the first meeting in mid-January.
Colby Jones’ 3-pointer put the Musketeers in front 62-61 with 2:36 remaining. Prosper was called for an offensive foul on the ensuing possession and Hunter rolled in a jumper from the lane to make it 64-61.
Nunge hit a 3-pointer to put Xavier up 55-49, but Marquette responded with a 7-0 run, going in front 56-55 on David Joplin’s 3-pointer.
Mitchell and Kolek hit back-to-back 3-pointers to fuel an 8-0 run to open the second half as Marquette erased a 28-24 halftime deficit.
Marquette overcame a slow start with a 15-4 run late in the first half, pulling within 23-21 on a drive by Kolek.
Xavier jumped out to a 19-6 lead as Marquette hit just three of its first 15 shots, including 0 of 5 beyond the arc, along with three turnovers.
–Field Level Media