For 25 minutes of game time, nothing went right for Chris Mack’s Xavier team.After a Bo Hodges three-pointer with 14:25 to play, East Tennessee State held a staggering 51-29 lead over the No. 10 Musketeers. Were they going down to an unranked opponent, at home, in December? Things looked dire.
But Mack rallied his troops, and the buckets started falling.
Trevon Bluiett dropped in two threes in 24 seconds…
Back-to-Back three's for Bluiett! #LetsGoX pic.twitter.com/kRmH6SMmzm— Xavier Gameday (@XavierGameday) December 16, 2017
…and Sean O’Mara said no…
OH MY O'MARA! pic.twitter.com/IvkSmlbp0B— Xavier Gameday (@XavierGameday) December 16, 2017
…and then a deep 3 tied the game with less than a minute to play…
TIE BALLGAME pic.twitter.com/m3zyWXJ1NA— Xavier Gameday (@XavierGameday) December 16, 2017
…and, well, in the end, Bluiett (who else?) did this to lead his team to a dramatic home win:
Who else would you want taking that shot?! pic.twitter.com/Zhqwy1mdsP— Xavier Gameday (@XavierGameday) December 16, 2017
Xavier, which advanced to 10-1, outscored ETSU 39-15 over the final 14:25 of Saturday afternoon’s dramatic 68-66 win, an impressive muscle flex from the team. The Musketeers turned up the defensive effort, holding the Buccaneers to 23 percent from the field during that stretch.
Obviously, Mack & Co. probably don’t want to fall behind by nearly two dozen points to anyone, but Saturday's win showed the Musketeers have something great teams always want: the resolve to mount a comeback.