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Villanova vs Cincinnati

Cincinnati 82, Villanova 78


CINCINNATI (AP) - CINCINNATI (AP) - Dion Dixon scored 22 points in a fire-away offense, and Cincinnati overcame Maalik Wayns' 39-point performance Saturday, rallying for an 82-78 victory over Villanova.

The Bearcats (14-4, 4-1 Big East) took the ball inside down the stretch, converting a pair of three-point plays to take the lead for good with 5 minutes left.

Villanova (8-10, 1-5) remained winless on the road this season despite a career-best performance from its point guard. Wayns had 19 points in the first half, when the Wildcats shot 64 percent from the field and led by as many as 10. He finished with a career-high 13 rebounds.

Wayns' driving basket cut the lead to 81-78 with 6.6 seconds left. Cashmere Wright was fouled on the inbound play and made the first free throw to seal it.

Yancy Gates had 16 points and nine rebounds for Cincinnati, off to its best start in league play since it joined in 2005-06.

Cincinnati's defense is ranked second-best in the Big East, but couldn't handle Villanova's outside shooters in the first half. Wayns made seven of his eight shot, and the Wildcats - one of the league's worst 3-point shooting teams - went 10 of 16 from behind the arc while surging to a 45-40 halftime lead.

Villanova couldn't keep it up. The Wildcats shot only 28 percent in the second half, allowing Cincinnati to catch up and nudge ahead. The Bearcats made 6 of 8 free throws in the final 28 seconds, including four by Wright, who was only 2 of 14 from the field.

Cincinnati had only three turnovers in the game, preventing Villanova to get the fast break baskets that are a staple of their offense. Villanova's Dominic Cheek had 16 points in the first half but finished with only 19, missing five of his six shots in the second half.

Cincinnati has won nine of its last 10, including a 68-64 victory at No. 11 Georgetown on Monday set up by tough defense. The Bearcats forced 17 turnovers and had 13 steals against the Hoyas, relying on the one constant during their recent streak.

That defense struggled at the outset on Saturday.

Villanova was second-to-last in 3-point shooting in the Big East, making only 24.7 percent, but found its touch to start the game. The Wildcats made 4 of 5 from behind the arc to open the game, pulling out to a 16-6 lead that forced Cincinnati to call a timeout and regroup.

The Bearcats also came out firing away.

Dixon made four 3s during a 22-5 run over the next 4 minutes that pushed it to 28-21. The Bearcats made six consecutive 3s during the spurt, with Dixon leading the way. He hit his first five shots overall, four of them from behind the arc.

Wayns hit back-to-back 3s during a 14-3 run that closed the half and put Villanova up 45-40. Wayns also opened the second half by hitting another 3 for an eight-point lead.

The run-and-gun pace stuck, with both teams shooting away. Villanova cooled off fast, making only 3 of 15 shots to start the second half. Cincinnati couldn't do anything consistently, either, resulting in five quick lead changes.

Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Cincinnati (14-4) «404282

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Villanova Wildcats
M. Yarou, F323-53-611029
J. Pinkston, F312-82-45356
M. Wayns, G3812-229-10136339
D. Cheek, G346-162-232319
A. Yacoubou, G291-40-03103
M. Kennedy171-20-02042
J. Bell140-00-04030
T. Johnson50-00-00100
Totals 25-5716-2246132078
Cincinnati Bearcats
Y. Gates, F347-112-393516
J. Jackson, F264-60-03348
C. Wright, G362-145-865411
D. Dixon, G347-194-633022
S. Kilpatrick, G324-74-520114
J. Parker172-42-30147
J. Davis131-42-22104
C. Mbodj80-10-01030
Totals 27-6619-2730162182
Big East
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Seton Hall0-05-152
St. Johns0-04-2161

Conference USA
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
La. Tech0-05-065
Middle Tenn.0-04-130
Old Dominion0-03-3145
Western Ky.0-03-3241
North Texas0-02-4348
UT-San Antonio0-01-6322
So. Miss0-00-4349
Other games
UConn 67 Final
ND 53
Kentucky 65 Final
Tenn 62
Michigan 59 Final
Iowa 75
Texas 73 Final
Missouri 84
K-State 73 Final
Oklahoma 82
NC 57 Final
Florida St 90
PITT 57 Final
MU 62
Okla St 65 Final
Baylor 106
Mich St 74 Final
Nwstern 81
DEP 59 Final
Louisville 76
Iowa St 73 Final
Kansas 82
Alabama 52 Final
Miss St 56
UNLV 67 Final
PROV 55 Final
Syracuse 78
TNTC 74 Final
Florida 79 Final
SC 65
GONZ 62 Final
LMU 58