Quincy Olivari scored a career-high 43 points and added 10 rebounds and Desmond Claude had 15 points as Xavier moved further away from a demoralizing defeat last weekend with a 93-68 victory over DePaul in Chicago on Saturday.
Dayvion McKnight scored 11 points and added seven assists as Xavier (12-10, 6-5 Big East) moved back above .500 in conference play. The win came less than a week after a 43-point loss at No. 1 UConn, a game that Xavier head coach Sean Miller said had to fill his team with doubt.
The Musketeers are 2-0 since then, with a victory over St. John’s earlier in the week.
Jaden Henley tied a season high with 17 points and Churchill Abass added 13 points and nine rebounds for DePaul (3-19, 0-11), which is now 0-4 under interim head coach Matt Brady, who took over when Tony Stubblefield was fired on Jan. 22.
K.T. Raimey had 12 points for the Blue Demons, who saw their Big East losing streak in regular-season play extended to 23 games going back to last season.
Xavier took control early, grabbing a 14-3 lead just over four minutes into the game on a layup from Olivari. The Musketeers led by as many as 17 in the first half at 25-8 with 13:19 remaining before the break on two free throws from Olivari.
DePaul got back within seven points at the midway point of the first half before Xavier led 47-33 at halftime behind 18 points from Olivari, while Claude had 13.
A basket from Henley with 17:44 remaining in the second half cut the Blue Demons’ deficit to 53-39, while matching their point total from Tuesday in a blowout home loss to Seton Hall.
Xavier took its first 20-point lead at 64-44 with 13:58 remaining after a 3-pointer from Olivari, who later passed the 40-point mark on another 3-pointer with 2:32 remaining. Olivari went 7-for-12 from distance for the game.
DePaul was playing without leading scorer Chico Carter Jr. because of a rib injury. It was also without Caleb Murphy (wrist).
–Field Level Media
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