It came awfully close, however, to the biggest letdown since the Warriors squandered a 20-point lead at halftime over Dubuque Hempstead earlier this season and lost by 10.
Parlaying dead-eye shooting and a stifling defense, Washington played to near perfection in building a 31-14 homecourt lead at halftime against the Saints. An 11-0 run to start the fourth quarter upped the margin to 56-33.
“I think at that point we started playing not to lose,” said Sanchez.
In a span of just four minutes, Xavier suddenly caught fire and went on a 25-6 spurt of its own to pull within four points with 1:20 still left to go.
“Fortunately,” the winning coach continued, “we held our composure. And we made just enough free throws at the end.”