Villanova survived a scare from the Bearcats at the Fifth Third Arena, but they held on to win 77-73. Nova looked to be clicking on all cylinders, until a 16 point lead dwindled to 2 with 2:42 remaining. Deonta Vaughn (18 points) played his heart out on Cincinnati's senior night, but it ultimately wasn't enough.
Now for some fun with captions...
Corey Stokes: "Don't worry, you'll get them in the second half."
Scottie Reynolds: "Please tell me you've washed your hands since last week."
Scottie was held scoreless in the first half, but did you really think that would continue into the second? He came out of the locker room to score 17 points, and he iced the game from the free throw line.
Coming off the bench for the second game in a row, Corey Stokes had his best game in over a month. He sank 3 of 6 shots from downtown to score 14 points. He was one of six Wildcats to score in double figures in the game, a stat reminiscent of the beginning of the season. Nova needs balanced scoring to succeed because sometimes the "Reynolds and Fisher Show" just isn't enough.
Reggie Redding: "Ahhh! Coach, Gates scares me!"
Jay Wright: "I'm watching you, Yancy."
At 6'9, 260, Yancy Gates is already scary, never mind when he starts getting into shoving matches with Antonio Pena and Mouph Yarou. Gates and Pena were called for double technicals for the scuffle. Gates had 13 points, but only 1 defensive rebound, despite being the biggest guy on the floor. Yancy (56.6% FT) also managed to somehow make all 7 of his free throw attempts.
Reggie Redding scored in double figures (11 points) for the first time since January 17 versus Georgetown. He also made a clutch 3-pointer that ended Cincy's comeback charge.
Cashmere Wright: "Since when does Villanova have a shot blocker?"
Mouphtaou Yarou: "Watch out little man, I'm making up for lost time."
Mooooooooouph! Back-to-back games with 10+ points and three in a row with 2 blocked shots. Believe the hype.
Antonio Pena: "Born Ready? I've been dominating the Coney Island playgrounds since you were in diapers."
The 23-year-old Antonio Pena and 19-year-old Lance Stephenson both attended the famed Lincoln High in Coney Island, Brooklyn, although they were a few years apart. Pena had a strong game, especially in the first half, and he finished with 10 points and 7 rebounds, but he fouled out for the eighth time this season.
Lance is athletic and has some skills, but he can't shoot (4-11 FG, 4-8 FT), which is kind of important when you're a shooting guard.
Mike Cronin: "What am I doing here? I wish I was back co-starring in movies with Jack Black."
Have you ever seen Mike Cronin and Mike White in the same room together?