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Gold Rush loses again in California tournament
November 29, 2008

Box score

     IRVINE, Calif. — Travis Noble and Chris Johnson scored seven points apiece Saturday during a second-half run which rallied Montana State-Northern to a 78-65 men's basketball victory over Xavier University of Louisiana in the Concordia Thanksgiving Tournament.
     Noble finished with 27 points and Johnson 22 for the Lights (10-3). Harold Cleveland scored a season-high 13 points for Xavier (6-2), and Shaun Dumas had 12.
     Xavier was 0-2 in the tournament and lost on consecutive days for the first time since a California trip in December 2004. MSU-N was 1-1 in the tournament.
     The Gold Rush, No. 14 in Victory Sports Network's NAIA Divison I rankings, rallied from a 12-point deficit to take a 53-51 lead on Landon Bussie's basket with 9:10 remaining. But Noble and Johnson keyed a 16-3 run during the next six minutes to give MSU-N a 67-56 lead, and Xavier never came closer than six points thereafter.
     The Lights, one of four teams to earn a share of the Frontier Conference regular-season championship in 2007-08, were 9-of-16 from 3-point range and made 29-of-33 free throws. The Lights were 7-of-8 from the line in the final 48 seconds.
     Cleveland — playing in his home state and scoring in double figures for the fourth consecutive game — made a basket at 10:39 of the first half to give Xavier its biggest lead, 10-4. But Johnson's jumper capped a 9-1 run which gave MSU-N a 13-11 advantage, and the Lights led 31-27 at halftime.
     Xavier made 22-of-28 free throws and outshot MSU-N 50 to 46 percent from the floor. Xavier's defense produced a season-low three steals one day after collecting a season-high 18. The Rush did not record its first steal until 4:59 of the first half.
     Concordia defeated MidAmerica Nazarene 81-73 in Saturday's second game and was the tournament's only 2-0 team. MidAmerica Nazarene, which beat Xavier 72-63 on Friday, was 1-1.
     Xavier's next game will start at noon Saturday against Paul Quinn at The Barn. It will be the final Gold Rush home game before Jan. 15.

 

 
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference
National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The Xavier Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets compete in Division I of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) as a member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Xavier fields men's and women's teams in basketball, cross country and tennis.

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