National Basketball Association
Xavier 73, Kent St. 59
When: 6:30 PM ET, Friday, November 12, 2021
Where: Cintas Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
Officials: # James Breeding, # LaMar Sampson, # Ed Corliss
Attendance: 10224

Xavier trailed for the first 25 minutes of Friday night's game against Kent State, but an 8-0 run just after the 10-minute mark of the second half helped the Musketeers cruise to a 73-59 win in Cincinnati.

Redshirt junior transfer and preseason All-MAC second-team nominee Sincere Carry made his presence known for the Golden Flashes, scoring a team-high 18 points in the loss. Carry and teammate Justyn Hamilton each had nine points in the first half as they took a five-point lead into the break.

The second half was a much different story, as it became the Paul Scruggs and Colby Jones show for Xavier. The two combined to shoot 8-for-14 from the field and 9-for-10 from the foul line with 26 points in the half.

Scruggs, a preseason All-Big East first-team selection, led all scorers with 23 points in the game and was one of three Musketeers in double figures on offense along with Jones, who had 19 points, and Jack Nunge, who had 11 points.

Xavier shot 48.3 percent from the field in the second half after making just a third of its shot attempts in the first 20 minutes.

Kent State would not only be outscored 42-23 in the final 20 minutes, but also out-rebounded 24-11 as the wind was very quickly knocked out of the Flashes' sails once Xavier got its footing.

Overall, the Flashes also had three players in double figures on offense, including Carry, Hamilton, who had 13 points, and Giovanni Santiago, who shot 3-for-6 from the field with 10 points in the loss.

The Golden Flashes came into the game, their season opener, with a 4-14 all-time record against the Musketeers, including an 0-4 record on Xavier's home floor, the Cintas Center.

Xavier's next game will be Nov. 18, where the Musketeers host No. 17 Ohio State in the Gavitt Tipoff Games, while Kent State will host Oberlin College in its home opener on Nov. 16.

--Field Level Media

Top Game Performances
Kent St.   Xavier
Sincere Carry 18 Scoring Paul Scruggs 23
Sincere Carry 4 Assists Adam Kunkel 4
Malique Jacobs 9 Rebounds Jerome Hunter 9
Andrew Garcia 4 Free Throws Made Colby Jones 6
Giovanni Santiago 2 Steals Paul Scruggs 3
Tervell Beck 1 Blocks Dieonte Miles 2
Team Stats Summary
Team Points FG% 3PM-3PA FTM-FTA Assists Rebounds Blocks Steals Turnovers
Kent St. 59 35.2 8-22 13-14 8 25 4 8 13
Xavier 73 40.3 6-29 17-22 14 43 9 8 16