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Two teams looking to make a move up the tight Big East standings meet Wednesday night when Providence visits Xavier in Cincinnati.

Both Providence (17-9, 8-7 Big East) and Xavier (13-12, 7-7) view this game as a must-win to continue realistic hopes of earning a bid to the NCAA Tournament.

This game also features the top two scorers in the Big East, with Providence star Devin Carter leading the league at 19.2 points per game and Quincy Olivari of Xavier ranked second at 19.1.

Since dropping a 68-50 decision at Villanova on Feb. 4, Providence has won three of four, including back-to-back home wins over St. John's and DePaul.

As has been the case all season, the Friars were paced by Carter and Josh Oduro in the two wins. Carter on Monday was named conference player of the week for the second time this season after averaging 22.5 points in the wins over St. John's and DePaul, while Oduro averaged 27.5 points in the two victories. They combined to score 100 of Providence's 156 points.

But it wasn't all positive, especially Saturday in the closing moments of their second win over DePaul, which Providence beat 100-62 earlier in the season. The Friars played sloppily throughout but still led DePaul 81-58 before the Blue Demons ended the game on a 12-0 run.

"There were moments during the game where it felt like we disrespected the game," Oduro said. "That's not who we are as a program."

Xavier, which has been off since losing at Seton Hall on Feb. 14, is on a two-game losing streak. Xavier trailed the Pirates 47-25 at the half before falling 88-70.

"We have to bounce back. That's what we've done very well from as far back as early November," Xavier coach Sean Miller said. "Nothing has been easy for us. We can't ask for it to get easier."

The Musketeers won the first meeting 85-65 on Jan. 13 at Providence, led by Trey Green's 23 points off the bench. Olivari was limited to 10 points, but Xavier pulled away in the second half after taking a 41-40 halftime lead.

--Field Level Media

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