Ground Hogs Day: Close again not Good Enough

Lots of heart, some missed FTs and a top ranked opponent have not been a good combination for MU this yr. For the second time in a week, Marquette knows the agony of a two point defeat as the 6th ranked Villanova Wildcats' extended their home unbeaten streak to 35 straight games at the Pavilion – by beating the comeback minded Marquette Golden Eagles 78-76.

The Wildcats (14-1, 3-0 Big East) surged to a 52-30 lead early in the second half only to have it eroded by a flurry of three point shots including 6 in a row by Marquette. (10-6, 1-3) who cut the lead to 2 points with 27 seconds left.

The key play in the game occurred with MU down by for with less than a minute to go. Wildcats guard Scottie Reynolds lost the ball at the top of the key and MU Lazar Hayward took the ball in for a layup attempt but was fouled hard from behind by Corey Stokes and crashed to the court. Referee Tim Higgins call Stokes for an intentional foul with 27 seconds. Hayward made both FTs to make it 75-73. The Golden Eagles got the ball back on a side out but Maurice Acker's pass in to Jimmy Butler on the block was knocked away on Villanova's quick collapsing defense forced the turnover.

It was MU's fourth consecutive loss to Villanova [2009 at the Pavilion, March at NYC and last week at Bradley Center] and its eighth straight road game against a ranked opponent.

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