Wright, Cincinnati down Jacksonville StateNov 16, 2011 - 5:48 AM Cincinnati, OH (Sports Network) - Cashmere Wright poured in 23 points to go with six rebounds and four assists, leading No. 20 Cincinnati to a 73-59 victory over the Jacksonville State Gamecocks from Fifth Third Arena on Tuesday.
Dion Dixon scored 20 points and pulled down nine rebounds for the Bearcats (2-0), while Sean Kilpatrick added nine points and three rebounds.
Yancy Gates and Justin Jackson also had nine rebounds apiece for Cincinnati.
Brian Williams and Mason Leggitt paced Jacksonville State (1-2) with 16 points each.
Stephen Hall chipped in with 12 points and five rebounds and Travis Gaines contributed eight points and five rebounds off the bench for the Gamecocks.
Cincinnati jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead just two minutes into the game and dominated the first half, as a three-pointer by Dixon with 2:53 to play in the half gave the Bearcats a 37-18 lead.
The Bearcats shot a sizzling 57 percent from the floor and an even hotter 7- of-8 from three-point land in the opening half and coasted into the break leading 44-21.
"You give up 57 percent in the first half, you won't have a chance to win," Jacksonville State head coach James Green said.
In the second half, the Bearcats continued to build on their strong first 20 minutes as a layup by Dixon with 18:25 to go in regulation gave his team its largest advantage of the night at 27 points, 48-21.
Jacksonville State fought back over the next four-plus minutes with a 15-1 run to make it 49-36 with 13:08 to play.
A jumper by Hall with 3:22 to go cut the deficit to 13 once again, but Cashmere responded with a bucket to push the lead back to 15, 67-52.
A jumper by Gaines with 1:33 to go in the game made it a 10-point game, 69-59, but that's a close as it got.
Cincinnati scored the last four points of the contest to hold on for the victory.
"After we got the lead, we relaxed and stopped playing. When you lose focus, anyone can come back on you," Dixon said.
This was just the second time these two teams met on the hardwood. Cincinnati won the only prior affair, a lopsided 95-43 decision at home in 2004...The Bearcats shot 48 percent from the floor and 62 percent from beyond the arc, while the Gamecocks shot only 37 percent from the floor and 21 percent from downtown...Cincinnati outrebounded Jacksonville State 40-32...Cincinnati is 36-3 all-time against members of the Ohio Valley Conference.
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