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Gold Rush close The Barn with 67-61 comeback victory
February 13, 2012

Box score

     NEW ORLEANS — Jamaan Kenner's 3-pointer with 42.6 seconds remaining Monday sparked a late burst which rallied Xavier University of Louisiana to a 67-61 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference men's basketball victory against Tougaloo.
     It was the final game at The Barn, a 1,300-seat gymnasium which opened in 1937, for the Gold Rush (19-7 overall, 8-3 GCAC). Xavier will play next season in a 4,500-seat facility which still is under construction.
     Xavier, ranked 25th in NAIA Division I, snapped the 11-game win streak of the 18th-ranked Bulldogs (19-6, 10-2) and prevented them from clinching the GCAC regular-season championship. Tougaloo leads the conference by 1 games with two games remaining. Xavier is in second place.
     Kenner's 3-pointer, his third of the game, put Xavier ahead to stay at 60-58. Tougaloo then missed two shots and committed a turnover before Kevin Miller scored to give Xavier a 62-58 lead with 19 seconds remaining. After a Tougaloo personal foul and technical foul, Chris Iles and Wanto Joseph each made 2-of-2 free throws for a 66-58 Xavier lead with 10 seconds remaining.
     Anthony Simmons scored 13 points for the Gold Rush, and Iles had 11, including three 3-pointers. Kenner and Denzell Erves scored nine points apiece, and Erves grabbed 10 rebounds.
     Marquise Mems scored 21 points, Juan Gray 12 and Kadon Day 10 for Tougaloo, which had won eight of its past 10 meetings with Xavier. James Carter grabbed 10 rebounds.
     Mems scored 13 points to lead the Bulldogs to a 37-24 halftime advantage, and they stretched the margin to 40-24 when Mems hit a 3-pointer with 18:28 remaining. But Simmons scored nine points during a 22-3 run which gave Xavier its first lead 14 minutes, and he capped the burst with two free throws for a 46-43 XU advantage at 9:44.
     Xavier shot 52 percent from the floor and made 14-of-16 free throws in the second half. For the game the Rush outshot the Bulldogs 44.4 to 30.9 percent from the floor. At the line Xavier made 21-of-24, and Tougaloo made 9-of-14. Three Bulldogs — including Mems, the GCAC's Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year this past season — fouled out.
     It was the final home game for Iles, Kenner, Cordell Hadnot and Jeremy Lee, who were honored in a pregame senior-night ceremony. Xavier will close the regular season with three conference road games, then travel to Jacksonville, Fla., for the GCAC Tournament on March 1-3. The tournament will receive the GCAC's automatic bid to the Buffalo Funds-NAIA Division I National Championship.
     The XU men won their final eight games at The Barn and 33 of their final 36.


 

 
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 teams in basketball, cross country and tennis and women's teams in basketball, cross country, tennis and volleyball.

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Xavier University of Louisiana
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New Orleans, LA 70125
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