Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 11/15/11
CINCINNATI (AP) -- Dion Dixon scored 16 of his 20 points in the first half, shooting over Jacksonville State's undersized zone defense, and the 20th-ranked Bearcats weathered a sluggish second half for a 73-59 victory Tuesday night. Cincinnati (2-0) opened with a 26-9 run behind Dixon's 3-point shooting. He finished 4 of 8 behind the arc, where the Bearcats went 8 of 12 overall. Cashmere Wright had 23 points. Jacksonville State (1-2) got 16 points apiece from Brian Williams and Mason Leggett. The Gamecocks have only one player as tall as 6-foot-7 and had to pack in a zone defense to keep up. The Bearcats were coming off a 65-40 win over Alabama State on Sunday night that highlighted their defense. They gave up only 14 points in the first half, and the 40 overall were the third-fewest allowed in coach Mick Cronin's six seasons. They were much sloppier against Jacksonville State, turning the ball over 20 times. After pulling ahead 44-21 at halftime, they allowed the Gamecocks to go on a 15-1 run in the second half and eventually get the lead down to 10 points. The Bearcats went 6 minutes, 8 seconds without scoring early in the second half, a drought ended by Yancy Gates' dunk. Stephen Hall's 3-pointer cut it to 67-57 with 1:50 left, the closest the Gamecocks could get. Cincinnati was ranked in the preseason poll for the first time since 2003. The Bearcats are easing into a favorable nonconference schedule in preparation for the Big East grind, a strategy that worked last season. The Bearcats reached the NCAA tournament in March for the first time since 2005 and are expecting to get back there again with their deepest team under Cronin. Jacksonville State is coming off a 5-25 season that led to big changes. The Gamecocks returned only four players, including lone senior Hall. The roster includes seven transfers and four freshmen. Their biggest challenge was up front. Jacksonville State has only four players as tall as 6-foot-6 and had to play zone defense to give itself a chance. Dixon's outside shooting helped the Bearcats take control right away. He hit three 3s in the opening 26-9 spurt -- the Gamecocks were only 4 of 16 from the field with five turnovers during that stretch. Dixon hit four 3s in the first half, all from the right wing, all of them with plenty of room to shoot. Gates ended the half with a shot that pleased the crowd of 4,542, hitting a 3 from the right wing at the buzzer for the Bearcats' biggest lead to that point. Gates, who had a double-double in the opener, finished with 9 points and 8 rebounds.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Top eight takeways from Raiders’ relocation to Las Vegas

Tony Romo upset with situation, distancing himself from teammates and coach

Kings owner looking for an executive to place over Vlade Divac

Elway: Broncos plan to 'stay the course' with Siemian, Lynch

Boykin may have violated probation, could face jail time

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

USF suspends DB indefinitely for role in shooting, arrest

Softball player, coach get physical in handshake line

Kraft: Patriots do not intend to trade Malcolm Butler

Brandon Marshall talks about how he can help Odell Beckham

Scherzer makes Tebow look silly in spring training at-bat

Lonzo Ball discusses headlines his father creates

Best, worst and hard to stomach MLB offseason moves

The 28 craziest ballpark foods for the 2017 season

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Box Score 3/24: Waiting on West Virginia

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

With Team USA's victory, World Baseball Classic (finally) lived up to its potential

The NFL distraction playbook

Which Sweet 16 team should you be rooting for?

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best, worst and hard to stomach MLB offseason moves

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

The NFL distraction playbook

With Team USA's victory the WBC (finally) lived up to its potential

The Aesthetic: The world of player exclusive sneakers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker