Updated at: 01/12/2013 9:37 PM
By JIM O'CONNELL
(AP) PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Cashmere Wright scored 23 points and No. 21 Cincinnati snapped a two-game losing streak and stayed unbeaten on the road with a 68-58 victory over Rutgers on Saturday night.
JaQuon Parker added 11 points and Sean Kilpatrick had 10 for the Bearcats (14-3, 2-2 Big East), who had lost two straight and three of four and dropped from being ranked as high as No. 8 in the Top 25. They are 6-0 on the road this season and that’s good news because this was the opening game of a seven-game stretch with five on the road.
Myles Mack had 15 points for Rutgers (11-4, 2-2), which had won two straight and seven of eight. The Scarlet Knights are 2-2 under coach Mike Rice since he returned from a three-game school-imposed suspension for inappropriate behavior.
Eli Carter, Rutgers’ leading scorer at 16.7 per game, was 1 for 11 from the field and finished with six points. He was 3 for 14 from the field against St. John’s, making him 4 for 25 in his last two games.
Cincinnati led 27-15 after a first half that saw the Bearcats shoot 29.0 percent (9 of 31) and the Scarlet Knights managed to make just 4 of 19 (21.1 percent).
Cincinnati scored the first six points of the second half for a 33-15 lead. Rutgers never threatened until the final minute when the Scarlet Knights got within 64-56.
The game was almost 5 minutes old before either team made a field goal.
Parker hit a 3 with 15:06 left to give the Bearcats a 4-0 lead. Thirty-two seconds later Mike Poole hit a foul line jumper to bring Rutgers within 4-2.
The first team to double figures was Cincinnati and the game was 12:14 in when Sean Kilpatrick hit a driving jumper to make it 11-5. Rutgers finally needed a second column on the scoreboard when Austin Johnson hit a jumper with 4:25 left to bring the Scarlet Knights within 21-11.
Rutgers’ first-half total was one point better than the lowest it ever had in the Big East, against Pittsburgh in 2003.
The win was coach Mick Cronin’s 127th at Cincinnati breaking a tie for third place with Gale Catlett.
Rutgers was looking for its first 3-1 start since joining the Big East. The Scarlet Knights had beaten four of the last six ranked teams to visit the Rutgers Athletic Center, including then-No. 24 Pittsburgh in its previous home game.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)