Butler holds off surge from George Washington

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Butler’s first trip to George Washington was as eventful as it could get for the Bulldogs on Saturday afternoon, including a 17-point lead that was nearly blown. Nonetheless, the #14-ranked Bulldogs (20-4, 7-2 A 10) managed to hold off a strong second half surge to defeat the Colonials.

After 48-31 with twelve minutes to play, Butler went cold, including a seven and a half minute stretch to end the game. Yet with 24 seconds left in the game, Kellen Dunham, hit two free throws to add to his ten points to put Butler up by three. That is when things got a little bit strange, as the Colonials’ Joe McDonald missed a three pointer to tie the game, and then with nine seconds left a held ball was called with the possession going to Butler. Roosevelt Jones traveled on the inbound, giving George Washington a second attempt to tie the game that also missed, but another jump ball gave George Washington one more chance.

McDonald tried a second time to tie the game, was stripped of the ball, and time ran out as Butler won the game. After the contest, Butler Head Coach Brad Stevens gave compliments to the George Washington crowd.

“Five straight places that have been absolutely jumping,” Butler coach Brad Stevens said. “You have to find a way to be tough. You have to find a way to stay together. Nothing builds team like that kind of environment. I really like it.”

Roosevelt Jones, who was wearing a pad on his shoulder after injuring it in a game against St. Bonaventure earlier in the week, finished with 12 points and 7 rebounds. Rotnei Clarke led all of Butler’s scorers with 14 points overall.

Butler returns to action on Wednesday night when they host the Charlotte 49ers.