INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Chuck Harris soar-started Butler’s offense early. Jair Bolden delivered the finishing touch.
Collectively, the Bulldogs’ backcourt turned into once unbeatable.
Harris scored 15 of his 20 points in the main half on Sunday and Bolden finished with 12 of his 15 in the second half to abet Butler draw again for a 73-61 win over No. 8 Villanova.
“Their guards beautiful dominated the sport,” Wildcats coach Jay Wright mentioned. “Particularly Bolden and Harris, we beautiful couldn’t regulate them.”
Harris and Bolden combined for four of Butler’s 10 3-pointers, including two in the waning moments to seal the victory.
It turned into once a tough day for the Wildcats (15-4, 10-3 Enormous East), who entered the sport as a 10 1/2-point accepted but made beautiful 2 of 27 3s. Villanova turned into once one in every of seven high-15 crew to stumble this weekend, following losses on Saturday by No. 2 Baylor, No. 7 Oklahoma, No. 11 Florida Say, No. 13 Creighton and No. 14 Texas. Later Sunday, No. 4 Ohio Say misplaced to No. 9 Iowa.
Villanova’s defeat wasn’t terribly shut, either.
Butler (9-13, 8-11) swung the sport with a suffocating defense that limited the Wildcats to one basket during the final seven minutes of the main half and an offensive designate fueled by Harris. That combination resulted in a 16-3 scramble that gave the Bulldogs a 31-20 lead. They by no scheme trailed again, winning their second straight whereas beating Villanova for the fourth time in the final five meetings at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
“I felt love our guys deserved it,” Butler coach LaVall Jordan mentioned. “From begin to finish, they carried out the sport plot, conducted by errors and conducted the total scheme by.”
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl and Collin Gillespie tried to rally Villanova in the second half. The Wildcats minimize a 42-28 deficit in half with a 7-0 flurry and scored again after Butler called timeout to make it a five-point sport with 14: 14 to hotfoot.
But Bolden’s 3 stopped the scramble, Bryce Golden made three straight baskets for the Bulldogs and Bo Hodges made but some other 3 to give Butler a 54-39 lead with 10: 40 left. And beautiful when the Wildcats plot they had an opportunity after getting within 57-50 with 6: 13 left, Harris and Bolden answered again.
Robinson-Earl finished with 16 points and 16 rebounds. Gillespie had 14 points.
Villanova: The loss obtained’t cease the Wildcats’ toddle of 30 consecutive weeks in the AP High 25. It would possibly perhaps well, on the different hand, influence their conference title hopes and possibly their potentialities of earning a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Clearly, Villanova wasn’t itself during the main half — shooting 28% from the sphere and grabbing beautiful one offensive rebound.
Butler: This has been largely a misplaced season for the Bulldogs. They struggled to find consistency between a rash of injuries and six postponed games. But the Bulldogs produced two solid performances this week by beating Seton Hall and now Villanova. If they keep on with it, they would possibly well just make a scramble in the Enormous East match.
Villanova: Justin Moore and Caleb Daniels every scored 10 points. … Villanova had six assists and two steals. … The Wildcats have confidence misplaced 19 conference avenue games since joining the reconfigured Enormous East. Four have confidence near at Butler.
Butler: Harris made five of his first eight pictures and finished 7 of 14. … Bryce Nze posted his fifth double-double this season with 12 points and 11 rebounds. He additionally had five assists. … Golden had 13 points and six rebounds. … Butler has scored 70 points four times this season. … The Bulldogs’ final four opponents are 15 of 81 on 3s.
TWO MEN OUT
The Bulldogs have confidence been playing instant-handed for a lot of the season and Sunday turned into once no exception. Starting guard Aaron Thompson uncared for the sport with shoulder and thumb injures and forward Christian David sat out with a knee injury. Thompson and David have confidence been two of the seniors honored with highlight packages that conducted on the scoreboard during timeouts in what’s going to be their final dwelling sport.
Villanova: Hosts No. 13 Creighton on Wednesday, a sport that will perhaps well determine the league’s well-liked-season champ.
Butler: Takes but some other extended damage sooner than closing the well-liked season Saturday at Creighton.
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