Butler outlasts Maryland to advance to Sweet 16
Buffalo, NY (Sports Network) – A.J. Graves had 19 points to help the fifth-
seeded Butler Bulldogs to a 62-59 win over the fourth-seeded Maryland
Terrapins in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in the Midwest Region.
Brandon Crone had 13 points, four assists and four steals and Mike Green added
eight points, eight rebounds and five assists for the Bulldogs (29-6), who
advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2003.
Butler will next face the winner of the Florida/Purdue game, which will take
place on Sunday.
Mike Jones led all scorers with 21 points while James Gist had 13 points,
eight rebounds and four blocks for the Terrapins (25-9), who are now 36-21
all-time in the tournament.
The game was tight through the first 10 minutes of the opening half but
consecutive layups by Ekene Ibekwe gave the Terrapins a 19-15 lead with 7:45
The Bulldogs, though, responded by scoring the next 13 points, including a
pair of three-pointers by Graves, and had a 28-15 lead when Drew Streicher
capped the run with a layup with 2:27 left.
A trey by Jones in the final seconds of the first half got Maryland to within
six points, 31-25, at the break.
Butler got the first basket of the second half, but the Terrapins scored 11
straight points and a three-pointer by Jones four minutes in gave his team a
The Bulldogs regained the lead on their next possession, but the Terrapins
kept the game close over the next several minutes and a Gist jumper with under
10 minutes to play made it a 46-46 game.
However, consecutive three-pointers by Butler a bit later, with the last one
coming from the hands of Crone with under six minutes to play, gave the team a
Maryland hung in and a layup by Jones and a free throw from D.J. Strawberry
cut Butler’s lead to 61-59 with 1:07 to play.
The Bulldogs turned the ball over on its next possession, but Strawberry was
called for an offensive foul as he drove in for a layup to give Butler the
Julian Betko had a chance to seal the win with a three-point attempt but his
shot hit off the rim. The rebound, though, went into the paint and Green
pulled it down, drew the foul and hit a free throw with 3.6 seconds left.
Dave Neal grabbed the rebound after Green missed his second free throw and
took the ball down the court, but Crone stripped Neal of the ball to seal the
Butler shot 44 percent in the game, including 12-of-26 from beyond the
arc…Maryland shot 47 percent and outrebounded Butler, 37-23, but committed
17 turnovers that led to 20 points for the Bulldogs…Ibekwe finished with
eight points and nine rebounds.