The Marquette Golden Eagles had 9-days off between games. But the well rested Golden Eagles struggled defensively and fell to No. 8 Xavier 89-70 on Wednesday night in Cincinnati.
Sophomore guard Markus Howard scored 33 points on 14-of-27 shooting, but no other Marquette player was able to hit double figures. Senior guard Andrew Rowsey entered the game averaging 21 points a game but scored just six on 2-of-9 shooting. Sophomore forward Sam Hauser suffered a hip injury late in the first half and played just three minutes in the second, finishing with five points.
The Musketeers (19-3, 7-2 Big East) shot 55.6% from the field and had five players score in double figures. Xavier scored 51 points in the first half when they made 57.6% of their shots.
Meanwhile, Howard scored 24 of the teams 33 points in the first half, hitting 11 of 18 from the field for Marquette (13-7, 4-4). But Howard had a streak of 66 straight made free throws dating back to last season, come to an end. Steve Novak holds the program record at 68.
Now the Golden Eagles have to regroup for a matchup against top-ranked Villanova on Sunday at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.