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James helps Marquette get revenge on Providence

Jan 4, 2008 - 7:23 AM MILWAUKEE (Ticker) -- Dominic James made sure history would not repeat itself for 11th-ranked Marquette.

James scored 21 points and dished out six assists to lead the Golden Eagles to their seventh consecutive victory Thursday night, a 96-67 triumph over Providence in both schools' Big East Conference opener.

Lazar Hayward scored 17 points and Ousmane Barro added 14 and nine rebounds for Marquette (11-1, 1-0 Big East), which lost its conference opener to the Friars last season.

Providence (9-4, 0-1) took a 23-20 edge on Weyinmi Efejuku's layup with 7:56 left in the first half but managed just three more baskets before the break.

The Golden Eagles took advantage of the Friars' offensive ineptness, closing out the half on a 21-9 run to take a 41-32 lead. Barro, who had three blocks, scored eight points during the burst after James started it with five quick points.

Hayward scored eight points in the first four minutes of the second half, igniting a 19-5 run to start the period. James collected the last six points of the burst that gave Marquette a 63-37 advantage with 14:01 remaining.

James shot 6-of-11 from the floor - including 4-of-6 from the arc - and has now scored in double figures in all but one game this season.

Marquette dominated the second half of the contest, outscoring Providence, 55-35, after the break.

Wesley Matthews registered 16 points and made all eight of his free-throw attempts, while Jerel McNeal finished with nine assists for the Golden Eagles.

Marquette continued to pressure offensively late in the game as Lawrence Blackledge scored seven points in just four minutes and fellow reserve Maurice Acker added eight in 18.

The Friars were plagued by inconsistent free-throw shooting, going just 15-of-25 (60 percent), while the Golden Eagles connected on 22-of-25 (87 percent) of their attempts from the line.

Providence, which had a four-game winning streak snapped, suffered its most lopsided loss of the season. The club was led by Brian McKenzie, who finished with 21 points and six rebounds.

Jeff Xavier had 11 points and six steals and reserve Jamine Peterson added 10 points for the Friars, who shot just 32 percent (9-of-28) during the second half.

    --- --- -----
    PROVIDENCE 32 35 67
    MARQUETTE (11) 41 55 96 FINAL

    Jan 3 11:10 PM


    Jan 3 9:56 PM