Postgame: Butler defeats Utah 81-69
Butler’s offense, powered entirely by their starting lineup, motored past Utah in what may have been their best performance yet. Butler’s record increases to 7-2, and they gain a much needed win come tournament time.
Kelan Martin exploded for 29 points and was getting whatever he wanted on the offensive end. He drove to the lane and dunked on smaller defenders, and when they switched a larger defender onto him he would make them look silly on the perimeter. He also hauled in 11 rebounds in the game, marking his third double double on the season and his fifth 20 point game of the season.
Tyler Wideman, Paul Jorgensen, and Kamar Baldwin all finished in double figures as well, scoring 18, 16, and 11 points respectively. Jorgensen stood out among these three because of his three point shooting (4-6), hustle plays made and his four assists. Baldwin also finished with five assists and a couple of steals.
For the Utes, Donnie Tillman lead the way offensively, scoring 20 points and grabbing six rebounds while coming off of the bench. Gabe Bealer lit the Dawgs up from deep in the first half, but slowed down in the second to finish with just 10 points on three made threes and a freethrow.
Butler’s offense looked to be the strongest it has been this season, shooting 55% from the field and 40% from three. This win over Utah, coupled with the big win over SLU last weekend, puts Butler right in the position they want to be leading up to a big game against Purdue on Dec. 16. Up next for the Dawgs is a confidence booster against Youngstown State on Saturday, Dec. 9.
Utah falls to 6-2 with this loss and will play Utah State in their next game in the Beehive Classic.
Player of the Game:
Kelan Martin was all over the court on the offensive end tonight. Rebounding and getting fast breaks going, shooting from deep, driving to the rim, and flat out getting it done. With his 29 point performance, he has three straight 20 point efforts and has boosted his average to nearly 18 points per game. If Martin keeps up this pace, his senior campaign, and the Bulldogs, will be successful.
Photo credit: Jimmy Lafakis twitter