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Big East Tournament 2011 Results: Cincinnati Eases Past USF, 87-61

Junior forward Yancy Gates netted a game-best 25 points to help the No. 7-seeded Cincinnati Bearcats collect a 87-61 victory over No. 15 South Florida Bulls in a second-round contest of the 2011 Big East Conference Tournament at Madison Square Garden. Cincinnati advances to play Thursday in the quarterfinals against No. 2 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (7 p.m. on ESPN).

The Bearcats (25-7), who led 34-22 at halftime, used a 10-2 run to push their advantage to 56-37 with 10:52 to go in the game. From there, Cincinnati held on for its third straight victory and sixth of its last seven. Junior guard Dion Dixon chipped in with 21 points, including four 3-pointers. Teammate freshman guard Sean Kilpatrick added 12 points off the bench.

Junior forward Augustus Gilchrist scored a team best 16 points for USF (10-22), which earned a first-round victory, 70-69, over No. 10 Villanova Wildcats on Tuesday. Teammate sophomore guard Shaun Noriega scored a team-best 12 points.

The Big East Tournament 2011 Schedule for Thursday now looks like this:

Noon (ESPN): No. 1 Pittsburgh Panthers vs. No. 9 Connecticut Huskies; 2 p.m. (ESPN): No. 4 Syracuse vs. No. 5 St. John's Red Storm; 7 p.m. (ESPN): No. 2 Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. No. 7 Cincinnati Bearcats; 9 p.m. (ESPN): No. 3 Louisville Cardinals vs. WVU/Marquette.

Here's a rundown for the final two days:

Semifinals (Friday, March 11): Thursday afternoon winners (7 p.m. on ESPN): Thursday evening winners (9 p.m. on ESPN).

Championship (Saturday, March 12): Semifinal winners (9 p.m. on ESPN).