MILWAUKEE -- Dominic James has been in a shooting slump. It hasn't slowed down Marquette (No. 12 ESPN/USA Today; No. 11 AP).
Ousmane Barro had 11 points and 11 rebounds to lead Marquette to a 67-47 win over Rutgers on Wednesday night.
James, Marquette's leading scorer, had his second consecutive subpar scoring game, tying a season-low with six points on 1-of-7 shooting. In the Golden Eagles' 69-62 victory over Providence on Saturday, he also was held to six points, making only 2-of-11 shots.James, though, had seven assists without any turnovers in 34 minutes."You have off nights," said Marquette assistant Bennie Seltzer, filling in during a post-game news conference because Tom Crean was feeling ill. "He didn't shoot it well. But as a point guard your passing is never off. Tonight was no different with that."The Golden Eagles (21-4, 8-2 Big East) opened the conference season with losses to Providence and Syracuse, but are unbeaten since.Rutgers (9-15, 2-9) has lost three consecutive games and eight of nine.Jerel McNeal, Wesley Matthews, David Cubillan and Dan Fitzgerald each scored 10 points as Marquette easily won a tuneup before a key game Saturday against No. 22 Georgetown."Five players in double figures: That's what happens when you share the ball," Matthews said.The Hoyas have won six consecutive Big East games and trail the second-place Golden Eagles by only a half-game."It's going to be tough," Matthews said. "It's at their place, it's on TV. They have a great coach, a great system and they're at home. We're going to have to play our game and adjust to another style of play."Rutgers has had trouble scoring and rebounding all season and continued to struggle against Marquette. The Scarlet Knights made only 17-of-48 shots (35 percent) and were outrebounded 40-28.If you don't score, you can't win," Rutgers coach Fred Hill said. "We haven't shot the ball real well. We've been inconsistent."Marquis Webb led Rutgers with 12 points and JR Inman added 11.Inman hit a 3-pointer to bring Rutgers within 40-34 with 14:38 left.Marquette, though, scored the next seven points to take a 47-34 lead on Cubillan's 3-pointer with 12:20 to go. The Golden Eagles led by double digits the rest of the game."They have great balance," Hill said. "They found a way to win, really not playing their style. In the second half, we did a good job controlling the tempo of the game."Marquette used a 12-2 run to open a 29-18 lead, capped by McNeal's 3-pointer with 4:40 left in the first half.Rutgers, which is 0-15 when trailing at halftime, held James scoreless until he hit a pair of free throws with 72 seconds left to give Marquette a 32-23 halftime lead.Marquette is in second place in the Big East, trailing No. 7 Pittsburgh (9-1) by a game and leading Georgetown (7-2) by a half-game.Fitzgerald started for the first time in five games for Marquette. He made 4-of-14 shots in 30 minutes.Rutgers' junior Ollie Bailey, the team's leading bench scorer at 4.2 points, was held out of the game for making an obscene gesture to Connecticut's fans during UConn's 61-50 overtime victory over the Scarlet Knights Saturday.Inman returned to the Rutgers lineup after missing the UConn game to attend his grandmother's funeral.Rutgers' Adrian Hill, who has had two surgeries on his left knee, was holding the knee and had to be helped off the court by teammates with 5:59 left."I hope it's nothing serious, but we couldn't keep him out there," Hill said.