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Updated: Saturday, January 18, 2003 9:05 PM EST
NCAA BASKETBALL RECAP
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(23) Xavier 86, Massachusetts 73
XAVIER (OH) MUSKETEERS
Xavier (OH) Musketeers
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MASSACHUSETTS MINUTEMEN
Massachusetts Minutemen
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AMHERST, Massachusetts (Ticker) -- Romain Sato scored 23 points as undermanned and 23rd-ranked Xavier coasted to an 86-73 Atlantic 10 Conference victory over Massachusetts.

Xavier (12-4, 3-1 A-10 West) continued to play without starting point guard Lionel Chalmers, who is sidelined with a foot injury. The Musketeers also have had one player quit and one player dismissed from the team.

That did not make a difference Saturday as the Musketeers held a double-digit lead for most of the second half. Massachusetts cut the lead to 78-71 on a basket by freshman Michael Lasme with 1:45 left, but two free throws each by Sato and Dedrick Finn sealed the win.

Jackie Rogers scored a career-high 23 points for Massachusetts (6-10, 0-4 East), making 11-of-12 shots from the line.

David West had 21 points and 11 rebounds and Finn added 21 points for the Musketeers, who won their third straight game.

Xavier coach Thad Matta used just seven players on Saturday, and West, Sato and Finn each played the entire 40 minutes.

Lasme originally was expected to miss the game with a wrist injury, but he managed to play 19 minutes and scored six points.

Senior forward Micah Brand tried to play with an ankle injury that forced him to miss a game earlier this week, but he was scoreless in 10 minutes.


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