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Butler holds off Evansville comeback

Dec 23, 2006 - 5:48 AM INDIANAPOLIS (Ticker) -- Evansville's heated comeback wasn't enough to overcome its coach losing his cool.

A.J. Graves scored 22 points and No. 16 Butler capitalized on a technical foul in an 86-75 victory over Evansville.

In beating their intrastate rival for the eighth time in the last nine meetings, the Bulldogs (12-1) opened their biggest lead of the game after a technical was assessed against Aces coach Steve Merfeld.

A late 7-0 run finally put away Evansville for good, which helped Butler improve to 6-1 against Indiana schools this season.

The Aces trailed, 49-43, but the game got away from them in less than a minute.

Pete Campbell buried a 3-pointer to push Butler's lead to 52-43 with 11:37 to play, and 18 seconds later, Merfeld drew a technical for protesting a foul.

Graves hit two free throws and Will Veasley scored on a layup as the Bulldogs' margin ballooned to 56-43 with 10:58 remaining.

Evansville (8-4), which had a four-game winning streak snapped, has one last gasp, using a 9-2 run to trim a 13-point deficit to 68-62 on a pair of free throws by Kyle Anslinger with 2:06 left.

That was as close as the Aces would get. Graves and Mike Green hit jumpers to spark a 7-0 spurt to hike the lead to 73-62 with 1:36 to play.

Green scored 16 points and Brandon Crone added 15 for Butler, which dominated the glass, 34-22.

Jason Holsinger sank five 3-pointers and scored 17 points for Evansville, which lost despite shooting 51 percent (21-of-41) from the floor.

    --- --- -----
    EVANSVILLE 30 35 65
    BUTLER (16) 37 39 76 FINAL

    Dec 22 9:03 PM


    Dec 22 7:47 PM