Xavier proved Friday night it was not a one-man team.
Published 12:00 am Friday, March 21, 2003
National Player of the Year David West picked up his second foul with
11:07 left in the first half and the Musketeers leading 16-10. West left
the game and did not return until the second half, but the Trojans were
outscored 21-12 during that stretch and trailed 37-22 at the half. West
had only four first-half points.
The deficit proved too large to overcome for the Trojans (26-6) and their
season ended in the first round of the NCAA Tournament with the 71-59 loss
to Xavier (26-5). T roy State was held to its lowest point total of the
season. The previous low was 61 points, scored twice, once a 76-61 loss to
UCF and once a 61-60 win over Gardner-Webb. But Troy State was not playing Gardner-Webb Friday night.
"We did not shoot like we wanted to early," Troy State head coach Don Maestri said. "We were a little nervous coming out and missed some wide- open shots. If those shots go down, I think that takes a little
nervousness away. Several of those shots went in the basket and came back
out. That extended our nervousness a little."
Troy State rallied to get as close as eight points in the second half, but
could never get any closer. Several times the Trojans had a chance to cut
into the lead, but missed shots or turned the ball over on three straight
"We made too many mistakes in that stretch and Xavier took advantage," LaCedrick Pettway said. "Give them credit; they are a good team"
Troy State shot only 26.7 percent from the field in the first half and was
outrebounded 26-15. Although Troy State improved its shooting in the
second half, Xavier's offense was too powerful for the Trojans to complete
Lionel Chalmers and Romain Sato led the Musketeers. Chalmers scored 20 on
five-of-nine shooting from three-point range and Sato added 18.Greg Davis led the Trojans with 20 points, 17 of which came in the second half.
The Trojans and the Musketeers struggled from the field early in the game,
and when the first TV timeout occurred, Xavier led only 3-2. The Trojans
missed several open looks at the basket and only scored on Rob Lewin's two- handed slam.
The Trojans could not find their shots early in the game. They hit only
five of their first 18 attempts from the field and were only two-of-six
from the three-point line.
Troy State finished the first half shooting only 26.7 percent from the
field. Greg Davis was one-for-six in the first half, Ben Fletcher was none- of-five and Herbert Evans was none-for-three. Two of Evans' shots were
layups that rolled off the rim. Xavier had trouble hitting shots early in the first half, but heated up
considerably. Lionel Chambers scored 14 points in the first half to lead
all scorers. He hit four of his six three-point attempts as Xavier built a
37-22 halftime advantage.