A packed, electric, and entertaining Hinkle Fieldhouse crowd at Butler University in Indianapolis, Ind. assisted the men’s basketball team to collect their first ever Big East Conference win.
The Butler Bulldogs had suffered five consecutive losses in the Big East before Saturday’s game. Three of the five losses – unsurprisingly for Butler basketball – resulted in an overtime decision. Villanova University and Georgetown University defeated the Bulldogs in overtime, while DePaul University needed two overtimes.
Facing off against Marquette University, the Bulldogs were determined to collect their first win in the conference. Overtime proved to be another game-ending decision for the Bulldogs. After coming from behind, Butler was able to hold off Marquette 69-57.
The first half scripted a tough Golden Eagles offense, scoring 32 points. The Golden Eagles gave themselves a solid six-point lead heading into the half. The lead seemed to comfortable because the Bulldogs came from behind in the second half to tie the game and force it into overtime.
Khyle Marshall was on his A-game all afternoon. The senior forward gobbled up 10 points and one rebound in the first half.
The second half featured a resilient Bulldogs squad, as Marshall, Kellen Dunham, and Erik Fromm combined for 16 points.
The defensive end was definitely a strong suit for Butler in the second half. Butler head coach Brandon Miller said, “We had to come back in the second half of the game, and I thought our team defense in the second half was the story of the game.” Alex Barlow and Kameron Woods helped the defense out, both having four rebounds, while Barlow alone had one steal.
With a huge flow of momentum on Butler’s back, the team was able to seal their first Big East win in only one overtime. Leaving no room for a possible second overtime, the Bulldogs gave themselves a comfortable 10-point lead with under a minute remaining. Ultimately this capped off the game, giving the team a tally in the victory column in the Big East.
The journey in the Big East continues on Tuesday, Jan. 21, at Providence University. The Bulldogs face off against the Friars at 9 p.m. EST.