LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Villanova took a step forward after dropping out of the Top 25 for the first time since December 2013.
Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree had 15 points and 13 rebounds and the defending national champion Wildcats stopped a two-game skid by beating Canisius 83-56 on Thursday in the opening round of the AdvoCare Invitational at Disney World.
“We pride ourselves on attention to detail, and as you can see right now we just don’t have it,” coach Jay Wright said. “We’ve got a lot of new guys but it was a good step for us today. I thought a lot of good details defensively, good details on the glass.”
Phil Booth also scored 15 points for the Wildcats (3-2). They will play Oklahoma State in the semifinals Friday. Oklahoma State beat Memphis 84-64.
Villanova went from No. 8 to out of the Top 25 after losing to Michigan 73-46 in a rematch of last season’s championship game and losing 76-68 in overtime to Furman last week.
“When we were in the AP poll we never talked about it, so when we’re not we don’t talk about it,” Wright said. “We were looking forward to playing better and that’s what I’m really pleased with.”
Villanova’s Mikal Bridges, Jalen Brunson, Donte DiVincenzo and Omari Spellman were all taken in the NBA draft after last year’s championship run.
Canisius (1-3) got 19 points from Isaiah Reese. Takal Molson, who entered averaging 21.3 points, had 10.
The Golden Griffins got to 63-52 with 4 1/2 minutes left before Villanova pulled away.
Canisius and Memphis will meet Friday in the consolation round.
Oklahoma State dominated inside in a one-sided victory over Memphis.
Cameron McGriff scored 11 points and added 12 rebounds, and Yor Anel had 12 points and six blocked shot as the Cowboys advanced to Friday’s semifinals with an 84-64 win over Memphis.
“We have a lot of size,” McGriff said. “We try and use that to our advantage.”
Oklahoma State (3-1) shot 57 percent.
“I think this team has got a chance to become really good over the course of the season,” Oklahoma State coach Mike Boynton said. “I’m excited to see them continue to grow.”
Tyler Harris led Memphis (2-2) with 14 points. The Tigers entered averaging 87 points.
Former Orlando Magic star Penny Hardaway is the first-year coach for Memphis.
“It was really embarrassing today, to me, to have our team go out and defend the way we defended,” Hardaway said. “We knew exactly what was coming and they still punched us in the mouth. They swung first and they never stopped swinging.”
No. 19 LSU plays Charleston and No. 14 Florida State goes against UAB later Thursday to determine the other semifinal
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