Two minutes in with their matchup with the Xavier, the Buffalo Bulls looked on par with the #11 team in the country. From there, everything fall apart. Buffalo soon experienced a tirade of fouls that simply could not be overcome to win this game as they lost a tough one 83-56.
Xavier came out ready for the Bulls. Instead of playing any 1-3-1 zone, they went with the 2-3 zone instead. The Bulls still played well against it, but foul trouble ruined any flow they could’ve had to their offensive game. Just ten minutes into the first half, Xavier already had a 27-11 lead.
Usually I’d give the refs the benefit of the doubt, even if it were a foul happy game. But, this was the worst officiated game I have seen in my short life. Buffalo couldn’t catch a break as Xavier easily reached the double bonus. Had this been spun around the other way, Xavier would’ve been on death row because of their short bench.
Buffalo finally started getting some offense through an attack from beyond the arc—which would’ve been huge had this still been a game. Slightly minimizing the damage, the Bulls went into the half with a 44-25 deficit.
The second half started well and it seemed the refs had calmed down. But, we were clearly wrong with that assumption as the refs started incessantly calling fouls again. The game was over as Buffalo could not overcome the foul trouble.
In total, Buffalo finished the night with 38 personal fouls. With a total like this, it was no wonder why the Bulls were too scared to play for the offensive rebound in the second half. Two Bulls fouled out while three more were on the cusp before it was all said and done.
Nick Perkins lead the Bulls for 15 points and 7 rebounds. He played magnificently despite taking 3 fouls early in the game and having to sit until the second half. He also shot 60% from beyond the arc.
Buffalo returns to Alumni this Thursday to take on Division III Nazareth. Tip-off is at 7:00 PM and the game will air on ESPN 3/WatchESPN.