MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Dawson Garcia registered 16 points and eight rebounds as Marquette routed Eastern Illinois 75-50 on Friday night.
Marquette didn't seem to miss the school's all-time leading scorer in the opener against Arkansas Pine-Bluff on Wednesday. Markus Howard averaged a nation-best 27.8 points last season, but Marquette (1-0) didn't seem to care that the sharpshooter graduated, jumping to a 50-18 halftime advantage Wednesday and cruising to a 99-57 home victory. Six players scored in double figures, led by 6-foot-11 freshman Dawson Garcia, a McDonald's All-American who finished with 19 points, four rebounds and four assists.
Searching for the program's first winning season since 2012-13, Arkansas-Pine Bluff figures to face an uphill endeavor by playing its first nine games on the road, including contests against foes from the Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, and Atlantic 10 conferences. To veteran coach George Ivory, whose Golden Lions were just 4-26 last season, the strategy allows the program to build itself not just fiscally, but mentally. Wednesday's season opener at retooling Marquette begins the mission.