No 8 Villanova beats Marquette 7356 Yahoo Sports — Volkswagen Pointer II

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No. 8 Villanova beats Marquette

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Hilliard watched intently night as the Philadelphia 76ers Allen Iverson’s number at the Fargo Center.

Less 24 hours later, in the same he tried to recreate the magic of his favorite player.

Hilliard a career-high 26 points and No. 8 Villanova set a record for regular-season wins a 73-56 victory over on Sunday.

»AI was the man,» said. »That was my favorite Seeing him go out and be the smallest guy on the court and what he did with everything him, it was something I looked up to. So pretty cool to be in this

Josh Hart added 13 and JayVaughn Pinkston had 11 points and rebounds for the Wildcats (26-3, Big East), who have won four and 10 of 11.

The Wildcats had never won 26 regular-season in the 95-year history of the program. won 25 games four previous most recently in 2008-09, a it reached the Final Four.

Burton scored 13 points for (17-12, 9-7) and Todd finished with 11 points and rebounds.

»I was proud of effort,» Villanova coach Jay said. »I know a good, hungry team and play hard. It’s to match that level.»

in the home of the 76ers Hilliard looked like an NBA guard the kind of show he put on for the fans. The junior guard had 18 points in half, shot 5 for 8 from range for the game and set his career with a dazzling drive put the Wildcats up 66-47 with left.

Hilliard’s previous career of 25 points came in an upset win Syracuse last season also at the Wells Fargo

»Darrun was on fire today,» said. »When you have who’s 5 for 8 from 3s, the defense is focusing in on him so that allowed me to get shots.»

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Darrun Hilliard II, bottom, is by Marquette’s Todd Mayo the first

Villanova was 12 of 29 from range.

Trying to make a push to get into the NCAA for the ninth straight year, came in having won five of including an important two-point over Georgetown on Thursday.

But the Golden Eagles never to upset the Wildcats, shooting 4 for 15 from 3-point range and 16 for 25 the free throw line. committed 15 turnovers.

»I say the number one disappointment is we didn’t as hard as we have to play on the to beat a team as good as Marquette coach Buzz said.

After falling by 11 points at halftime, Marquette just one field goal the first 5 minutes of the second to allow Villanova to open a lead.

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head coach Jay Wright to a play during the first of an NCAA college basketball

led by double digits the rest of the way to one full game ahead of No. 9 for first place in the Big East.

The Wildcats’ only two conference have come to Creighton, fell out of first place losing to Xavier on Saturday.

don’t think they’re to win our league or they’re eighth in the based on one number,» Williams »I think they’re good in each phase of the but I also think they for one another. I think they incredibly hard and I think play with great

Hilliard and Hart combined to Villanova’s first 20 points, Pinkston and Tony Chennault the next nine for the Wildcats. Ochefu then forced a ran ahead of the pack and had a transition to cap a 17-4 run and send Villanova to a lead with 3:18 in the first half.

The Golden Eagles cut the deficit to six a couple of minutes later, but scored five straight to close the half, hitting two throws after Williams was for a technical foul and drilling a with 2 seconds remaining.

thought that series was for us,» Wright said. were struggling a little and were coming back.»

The led 36-25 at halftime despite starting guards Ryan and James Bell playing 6 and 5 minutes, respectively. Neither in the first half and Bell, the leading scorer, didn’t at all and remains six points shy of 1,000 for his career.

»In the first when we were playing James Bell and Ryan I thought our energy level went up,» Wright »I thought we were a quicker team. And then guys were really in the second half.

»We’ve been trying to our depth throughout the season and was really important to have first half like

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