Villanova 73, American U. 52

Maalik Wayns came off the bench to score 12 points and lead

Villanova to a 73-52 victory over American University on Thursday

night.

JayVaughn Pinkston also had 12 points for Villanova (7-5), which

had lost five of seven games entering Thursday. Wayns, who averages

a team-best 17.9 points, had started the previous 11 games but was

kept out of the opening lineup due to a virus. He added nine

assists.

The Eagles were playing without second-leading scorer Troy

Brewer (14.1 ppg), who missed his second straight game with turf

toe.

His replacement, Blake Jolivette, tallied a career-high 19

points to pace all scorers. Charles Hinkle, who ranks seventh in

the country in scoring (21.7 points), netted 17 points for American

(8-5).

It was the third straight loss for American.

The game was the final one on Villanova’s nonconference slate

before it begins Big East play next Wednesday at West Virginia.

The Eagles cut into Villanova’s nine-point halftime lead,

drawing within 38-33 two minutes after the break as the Wildcats

missed their first nine shots of the second half.

But Villanova recovered to score nine straight points, capped by

a Wayns 17-foot jumper, to take their largest lead, 47-33, with

13:54 seconds left. The Eagles never got closer the rest of the

way.

The Wildcats led 22-20 with 7 1/2 minutes left in the first half

before Wayns got going. The Wildcats’ junior point guard scored six

of the next eight points to help Villanova outscore American 14-4

over a nearly five-minute span to take its biggest lead, 36-24,

with 2:48 left in the half.

Villanova has won all nine meetings versus the Eagles.

Former Philadelphia 76ers coach Larry Brown was among those in

attendance. Also watching the game was former Villanova coach

Rollie Massimino as the Wildcats honored former players and coaches

at halftime on Alumni Night.