PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Providence College Friars were defeated by the No. 4/4 Villanova Wildcats, 66-57, in BIG EAST men's basketball action on Wednesday, February 1 in Providence, R.I. Freshman Alpha Diallo led the Friars with 18 points. With the loss, Friars fell to 14-10 overall and 4-7 in BIG EAST play.
In a closely contested first half, Villanova led the Friars, 32-29, after 20 minutes of play. Diallo had 10 points in the first half and led the Friars, who as a team shot 10-22 from the field. Josh Hart paced Villanova with 12 points.
With 5:55 remaining in the game, the Friars trailed by 11 (59-48) after a dunk by Eric Paschall. However, the Friars chipped away at the lead and cut it to two points (59-57) after a three by Diallo with 2:12 to play in the game. The Friars were not able to any closer the rest of the way. With 42 seconds left, the Friars had one more chance to cut into the lead, trailing 61-57, but Rodney Bullock turned the ball over driving to the basket and Villanova converted a layup on the other end and an an one by Jalen Brunson to take a seven-point lead (64-57) with 40 seconds left.
Villanova (21-2, 8-2 BIG EAST) was led by Jalen Reynolds, who had a game-high 21 points. Hart finished with 17 points for the Wildcats.
Providence shot 40 percent (21-53) for the game. Villanova finished 26-56 (46%) from the field overall and 7-21 (33%) from beyond the arc.
The Friars will return to action on Wednesday, Feb. 8 at Seton Hall at 8:30 p.m. on FS1.
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