PROVIDENCE, RI (AP) — Providence upset a ranked team for the second time in five days on Wednesday night with its 83-68 win over #8 Villanova.

The Friars had gone 51 weeks and 17 games without a Big East victory before beating #19 Louisville, 72-67, on Saturday, but now have won two straight conference games. On Wednesday, they never trailed as the Wildcats couldn’t mount a serious comeback.

Marshon Brooks scored 20 points for the Friars.  Providence (13-8, 2-6 Big East) led 34-25 at halftime, then stretched the margin to as much as 18 points on a three-pointer by Bryce Cotton that made the score 74-56 with 2:50 left.

Villanova (17-3, 5-2) was led by Maalik Wayns with 18 points and Antonio Pena with 17.

The Wildcats were coming off an 83-72 upset at #3 Syracuse on Saturday night and had beaten the Friars in their last eight meetings since a loss on Feb. 11, 2004.

But Villanova’s top two scorers, Corey Fisher and Corey Stokes, only had seven points each and the team shot a season-low 32.5 percent from the field. Its three losses have come in its worst shooting games.

Against Syracuse on Saturday, Villanova had hit 50 percent of its shots while Wayns and Fisher made 6 of 7 shots from behind the arc in the first half. On Wednesday, Wayns was 2 for 4 on three-pointers, but Fisher missed all four of his attempts and Stokes went 1 for 9.

(Copyright 2011 by the Associated Press.  All rights reserved.)

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