Newswire photo by Sydney Sanders | Trevon Bluiett became just the fifth player in program history to reach the 2000-point milestone in last Wednesday’s win against Marquette.
Today’s era of college basketball does not lend itself to 2,000 point scorers as frequently as days of old. In this day and age, the majority of the players who are talented enough to score 2,000 points in their collegiate career find themselves playing professionally before they can ever cross that threshold.
Recently, there was an exception to that trend. Last week against Marquette, senior Trevon Bluiett nailed a jumper from the elbow in the second half to accomplish that feat.
He joined Byron Larkin, David West, Romain Sato and Tyrone Hill as the only Musketeers to score at least 2,000 points. He scored 408 points his freshman year, 512 points as a sophomore, 665 in his junior campaign and has racked up 429 so far this season.
There was rampant speculation at the conclusion of last season that Trevon would not be returning to fulfill his final year of eligibility. Instead, it was assumed that he would enter the professional ranks.
In late May, Bluiett announced on Twitter that he would be donning a Xavier uniform for one final season in hopes of leading his team to another outstanding March. If the Musketeers play the way they did against the Golden Eagles last week, there is a good chance that could happen.
Xavier underwent a tough stretch of games during the latter part of December and into early 2018, but it seems to have rectified a lot of those issues. Wednesday’s game against the Golden Eagles was one of the most dominating performances of the year against a stout team that took Villanova to the wire only a few days later.
The Musketeers exploded out of the gate and never looked back. They ripped off 51 points in the first half and had at least a 90 percent chance of winning the game for the majority of the contest.
Markus Howard was a major thorn in the side of Xavier throughout the first half, but the problem for Marquette was that he was the only one producing any offense. He scored 24 of the team’s 33 first half points.
On the other side for Xavier, the guard play was extremely impressive. Quentin Goodin and Paul Scruggs combined for 25 points and went 4-5 from beyond the arc. That is the kind of performance that will pay significant dividends for Xavier come NCAA Tournament time.
Goodin and Scruggs are both considered below-average shooters, so their abilities to stretch the defense and knock down perimeter shots will open up driving opportunities for players like Bluiett and J.P. Macura.
Freshman Naji Marshall also had an impressive game against the team from Milwaukee, scoring 10 points en route to being named the Big East Freshman of the Week for the second time in the month of January.
Bluiett’s 10th career double-double secured him a spot on the Big East Weekly Honor Roll for the sixth time this season. His 13 points and 10 rebounds helped lead Xavier to an eventual 89-70 victory.
Then on Tuesday night, Xavier survived a scare against an upset-minded St. John’s team. The Red Storm are definitely better than their winless record in conference play, and they have posed formidable challenges to the Musketeers twice this year.
This time, Xavier did just enough to come away with a 73-68 victory in Queens led by a 14-point effort from Bluiett.
By: Paul Fristchner ~Staff Writer~