By Harry Allison

Tyler Kolek scored 20 points and No. 14 Marquette rallied to beat Villanova 73-64, keeping pace with Xavier atop the conference standings.

Marquette (18-5, 10-2) has won four straight and nine of 10. The Golden Eagles remain tied for first place in the Big East with No. 16 Xavier, which won 85-83 in overtime against No. 17 Providence earlier.

Kam Jones had 18 points for the Golden Eagles. Eric Dixon and Caleb Daniels scored 14 each for Villanova, which committed a season-high 19 turnovers.

Villanova (10-12, 4-7) made Marquette work for this one.

In a game neither team led by more than six until the final minute, Kolek put the Golden Eagles ahead for good at 63-62 by sinking two free throws with 4:32 remaining. That started a 10-0 spurt that put the game away as Marquette’s defense made seven straight stops.

After shooting 57.9% overall and 7 of 13 from 3-point range in the first half, Villanova shot 40% from the floor and went 4 for 14 from beyond the arc the rest of the way. Wildcats coach Kyle Neptune said the difference in Marquette’s defense during the second half was apparent.

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