No. 8 Xavier outlasts ButlerDec 8, 2011 - 7:29 AM
Mark Lyons also scored 16 points for the Musketeers (7-0), who shook off Butler's rally in the second half after holding a 16-point lead at the break.
Roosevelt Jones paced the Bulldogs (4-5) with 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Chase Stigall added 10 points, but the two-time national runner-ups shot just 31 percent from the field to drop their second straight.
Xavier rattled off 17 straight points in a six-minute stretch early in the first half, with Lyons' layup at the midway point providing a 21-6 lead.
Dezmine Wells' three-pointer just before the break gave the Musketeers a healthy 39-23 cushion, thanks to Butler shooting just 20 percent from the field.
"Road games are always tough," said Wells. "You want to come out an knock them in the mouth first."
The Bulldogs turned things around early in the second half though, embarking on a 16-2 run to pull within four, 43-39, just 5 1/2 minutes in.
Stigall made a pair of three-pointers during the rally, but Xavier withstood the momentum shift and silenced the home crowd with a 7-0 run -- capped by Well's three-point play -- to extend its lead to 56-43 at the midway point.
Another 10-point flurry a little later all but ended Butler's comeback, with Wells' emphatic dunk yielding a 68-50 margin with 5 1/2 minutes to play.
Xavier leads the all-time series, 30-16...Wells donated 13 points for Xavier, which got nine points and eight rebounds from Travis Taylor...Butler plays at Ball State on Saturday before a tough stretch against Purdue, Gonzaga and Stanford.
- XAVIER: 73
Dec 7 11:15 PM
- XAVIER: 39
Dec 7 10:03 PM
- XAVIER: 0
1st Half - 20:00
Dec 7 9:07 PM
- No NBA: Trevon Bluiett staying at Xavier for junior season May 23
- Butler basketball coach agrees to contract extension May 18
- Butler fills assistant coaching void with hire of Schrage May 12
- Butler adds graduate transfer Avery Woodson to roster Apr 25
- Xavier gives coach Chris Mack an additional year on contract Apr 14
- Badgers, Musketeers preparing for physical NCAA clash Mar 19
- Xavier pulls away from Weber State late for 71-53 win Mar 18
- Butler partners with bone marrow registry in Smith's honor Mar 18
- Shut out of NCAA games, Butler's mascot hard at work outside Mar 18
- No. 1 seed Virginia prepares for 2nd-round test from Butler Mar 18
- Xavier opens tourney vs Weber St, hoping for deep run Mar 17
- Smith leads 5th school to NCAAs as Texas Tech faces Butler Mar 16