Fri, 26 Feb 2021

Butler dispatches No. 8 Creighton in OT

Field Level Media
17 Jan 2021, 07:56 GMT+10

Aaron Thompson's 17 points and six assists propelled host Butler to a 70-66 upset victory over No. 8 Creighton in overtime on Saturday in Big East play at Indianapolis.

Thompson assisted Bryce Nze's go-ahead layup with 1:10 remaining in overtime and later drew an offensive foul from Creighton's Denzel Mahoney. Butler sealed the outcome on a Myles Tate jumper and a free throw from Chuck Harris.

Butler (4-7, 3-5 Big East) snapped the Bluejays' six-game winning streak.

Mahoney finished with a season-high 29 points and grabbed seven rebounds and nearly led Creighton (10-3, 6-2) to its own comeback victory in the second half.

Nze's three-pointer to open the second half gave Butler a 35-25 lead. But back-to-back triples from Mahoney gave Creighton its first lead of the game with 15:55 left as part of a 26-3 scoring run.

But Thompson keyed a 13-0 run for Butler with seven points and an assist on a Nze triple. He split two free throws after drawing a flagrant foul from Mahoney with 3:22 left to cut Creighton's advantage to 60-58. After Myles Wilmoth tied the game, Thompson gave Butler the lead back 62-60 with a layup with 59 seconds remaining.

Mahoney tied the game with a pair of free throws with 37 seconds left.

Butler had three chances to win it in the closing seconds of regulation. But Nze's driving shot was blocked by Christian Bishop. Myles Wilmoth and Tate each missed follow-up jumpers as well.

Creighton played its second consecutive game without point guard Marcus Zegarowski (hamstring), the preseason Big East Player of the Year.

Tate and Nze each finished with 15 points and Harris, who returned to the rotation after missing the Bulldogs' previous game with a knee bruise, chipped in 10 points off the bench. Butler protected the ball well throughout the game committing only one turnover in the first half and seven overall.

Damien Jefferson finished with 12 points and Bishop finished with 10 points for Creighton, which lost despite shooting 46.3 percent overall.

Butler shot 37.5 percent from the field.

--Field Level Media

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