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Muskateers rally, beat Alabama 77-74

Muskateers rally, beat Alabama 77-74
Posted Sunday, December 22nd 2013 @ 12pm

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Isaiah Philmore and Matt Stainbrookled Xavier (9-3) to a come-from-behind 77-74 victory on Saturday evening at Alabama (5-6). The two big men combined for 34 points and 18 rebounds in the contest.

Facing a 12-point hole with just over 16 minutes left in the game, Xavier erased the deficit and tied the game at 61 on an old-fashioned three-point play by Stainbrook with 5:03 remaining.

On Alabama's ensuing possession, Semaj Christon came up with a steal and fed Dee Davisfor another basket and Xavier's first lead since the 14:16 mark of the first half. Davis was fouled on the lay-up and finished off the three-point play at the charity stripe to give XU the 64-61 advantage. The Musketeers never trailed the rest of the way.

Xavier's defense was instrumental in the comeback, holding Alabama without a field goal for over nine minutes in the second half, beginning at the 9:48 mark and finally coming to an end with 19 ticks left in the game.

Four Musketeers finished in double-digits, led by both Philmore and Stainbrook with 17 points. Both Dee and Myles Davisreached the mark as well. D. Davis closed with 12 points and M. Davis added 10 points.

Alabama outshot Xavier 49 percent to 40 percent, but made two fewer baskets. Led by Philmore's game-high 12 boards, Xavier also posted a 38-34 advantage in rebounds. Seventeen of XU's boards were on the offensive end and led to 19-9 advantage second-chance points.

The Musketeers trailed 33-26 at halftime. Philmore led the Musketeers with seven points in the frame and both Chirston and Stainbrook chipped in six.

The Crimson Tide were led by Trevor Releford with17 points. Shannon Hale chipped in 14 and Levi Randolph added 13.

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