Bearcats Down Xavier in Crosstown Classic
by John Bach
A strong second half powered the undefeated Bearcats past Xavier 60-45 at the Crosstown Classic Dec. 19, 2012, at US Bank Arena. UC, now 11-0, was led by Sean Kilpatrick, who finished with 25 points and seven rebounds. He and Cashmere Wright, who finished with 15 points, helped UC recover from a sloppy first half that left UC trailing by two at the break.
The Bearcats ratcheted up the intensity to start the second half and turned Xavier over repeatedly with a smothering full-court press. Once UC gained the lead, they never gave it back, a feat made easier by XU's poor shooting, particularly at the line, where they converted just three of 14.
This year's Skyline Chili Crosstown Classic replaced the annual Crosstown Shootout and moved to the neutral downtown location following last year's ugly brawl that became a national spectacle. Since then, both schools, administrators and players joined with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center to pursue peaceful causes together. UC President Santa Ono and XU President Rev. Michael Graham delivered a joint $50,000 check to the Freedom Center prior to tip-off.
Cheerleaders and dancers from the two schools performed joint routines throughout the night, and players made obvious olive-branch efforts — helping one another up during the game and hugging in the handshake line afterward.
Photos by Ashley Kempher
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