Marquette rallies to beat Providence 91 -82

Trailing by 13 points midway through the 2nd half, #14 Marquette ended the game with a 26 to 7 rally to beat Providence, 91-82 at the Duncan Donuts Center in R.I. Marquette[16-2, 5-0]was lead by Jerel McNeal and Lazar Hayward who both scored 25 pts each with Hayward leading the late offensive surge hitting 4 of his 5 threes in the 2nd half.

Wes Matthews added 22 points, many on lane post ups against the Friars' zone defense. Providence [11-6, 3-2] was lead by Marshon Brooks who scored 21 pts off the bench.

In the second half, there was a scary moment after Friar Jeff Xavier drove to down the lane and suffered a facial injury when he collided with Joe Fulce's hand/elbow. As Xavier was helped off the floor, the older brother of Xavier, walked down from the stands, stepped over the bench and walked to the lane area where Providence was attempting a FT. He was trying to talk to the referee.

MU coach Buzz Williams ran out to the court and ordered his team back to the MU bench area. After the game Williams said, "It scared me to death…that is crazy….How did security let him go?…I told the ref that we will go home before I let someone try to hurt our players. It was an extremely dangerous situation. I have never seen it…I won't let anything happen to our kids…I told the refs that we're out of here..."

MU's 26-7 run to finish the game erased a 13 point Friars lead. Maurice Acker keyed the rally with his energy at PG. Williams called Acker his game MVP. Hayward hit 4 for 6 from three point land in the 2nd half to key the comeback.

In the first half, Dwight Burke picked up his 3rd foul and Patrick Hazel his 2nd foul so MU Coach Buzz Williams put in F Joe Fulce for his first Big East playing experience. Out with a stress fracture on his knee cap since October, Fulce looked rusty on defense but scored 6 points on 3 FGs, a 10 foot baseline jumper, a reverse lay in after a baeline drive and a dunk off a dump down pass.


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