CINCINNATI (AP) — Souley Boum scored 23 points, Jack Nunge added 17 points and 14 rebounds, and Xavier defeated West Virginia 84-74 in the Big East-Big 12 Battle on Saturday night.
Boum, coming off an all-tournament performance at the Phil Knight Legacy, added seven assists and four rebounds. He attempted only eight shots but made 11 of 14 free throws.
After trailing 43-36 at halftime, Xavier made a push early in the second half and took a 56-55 lead on a jumper by Nunge with 12:53 remaining. The largest lead over the next nine minutes was three points by each team and Xavier led 73-72 at the 4-minute media timeout.
Boum, who had been fouled by Joe Toussaint while shooting a 3-pointer prior to the timeout, made three free throws for a four-point Xavier lead. The free throws began a stretch in which Boum scored nine of Xavier’s next 10 points and the Musketeers won going away.
Colby Jones added 14 points and Adam Kunkel scored 11 for Xavier (6-3).
Erik Stevenson scored 16 points, Emmitt Matthews Jr. and Jimmy Bell Jr. had 11 points each for the Mountaineers (6-2). Toussaint had nine points, four rebounds and four assists.
Xavier improved to 4-0 in Big East-Big 12 Battle games, having previously defeated Oklahoma State (2021), Oklahoma (2020) and TCU (2019).
Coming in, both teams had only lost to teams still ranked in this week’s Associated Press Top 25. West Virginia’s loss was to No. 5 Purdue. Xavier was defeated by No. 10 Indiana, No. 14 Gonzaga and No. 17 Duke.
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