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Xavier erases 18-point deficit, beats Wake 78-70

Posted at 10:17 PM, Dec 22, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-22 22:18:43-05

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Trevon Bluiett scored 14 of his 17 points in the second half, and No. 6 Xavier beat Wake Forest 78-70 on Tuesday night in the Skip Prosser Classic.

Freshman Edmond Sumner added 13 of his season-high 21 points after halftime for the Musketeers (12-0). Debuting at the highest national ranking in school history, they trailed by 18 in the first half and 15 at halftime before shooting 59 percent in the second half.

Bryant Crawford had 16 points and fellow freshman John Collins added 11 for the Demon Deacons (8-3), whose best chance to tie it came when they trailed 69-67 and Crawford was called for charging — then given a technical foul.

After Myles Davis hit both free throws, Wake Forest came up empty on three straight possessions while trailing by four. James Farr then hit a big layup to make it a six-point game with 44.9 seconds left.

Farr finished with 12 points for Xavier, which erased its huge deficit — and kept the best start in school history alive — by scoring 12 straight points during the 26-6 run that was keyed by Sumner and Bluiett.

Those two scored 10 points during that surge, with Sumner putting Xavier ahead to stay with a driving layup one possession before he ended the burst with a falling-down 3 in front of the bench that made it 52-49 with just over 13 minutes remaining.

Crawford scored 13 points during a first half dominated by the Demon Deacons, who went up 36-18 on Cornelius Hudson's steal and layup with just under 4 minutes before the break.

Remembering Skip

This was the fifth meeting in the event that bears the name of Prosser, who coached at Xavier from 1994-2001 before moving to Wake Forest, where he coached until his death in 2007. Xavier coach Chris Mack was on Prosser's staff at Wake Forest from 2001-04 before returning to the Musketeers. The schools met once a season in Prosser's memory from 2010-13 but the series was not played last year.

Tip-Ins

Xavier: The Musketeers' 18-point deficit was by far their largest at any point this season, surpassing the seven-point hole they escaped against Alabama on Nov. 26. They also trailed at halftime (43-28) for the first time this season.

Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons were trying for their biggest non-conference win at home since they knocked off then-No. 3 Kansas in 2000. They were playing host to a ranked non-ACC team for the first time since 2004.

Up Next

Xavier is at No. 17 Villanova on Dec. 31.

Wake Forest is at LSU on Dec. 29.