Men's Hoops Falls to Butler in Regular Season Home Finale, 79-52
Feb. 19, 2011
CHICAGO - Butler placed four players in double figures, and opened up a double-digit lead late in the first half, leading to a convincing 79-52 win over the UIC men's basketball team at the UIC Pavilion Saturday afternoon.
Playing in their final home game, seniors Paul Carter (15 points) and Robo Kreps (10) combined to score 25 points. Butler was led by Matt Howard's 19 points - he was joined in double figures by Andrew Smith (16), Shawn Vanzant (11) and Shelvin Mack (10).
"Butler is a very good team; that goes without saying," said head coach Howard Moore. "They came in and imposed their will on us today. It's very frustrating and disappointing to have these results on senior day. But as I've mentioned before, Butler has a program that is at the level of where we are aspiring to be. They were very impressive, and did a good job today.
"Unfortunately, near the end of the first half, I thought we lost our focus, and our sense of purpose. We got away from what we were doing in the beginning of the game, and what was working. Part of that was us; part of it was due to Butler turning up the defensive intensity. They forced us into some frustrating possessions down the stretch of the first half."
There were a combined 13 ties and lead changes in the first half, as the opening 15 minutes was a back-and-forth affair. UIC opened up a game-high 21-17 lead with 10:34 remaining, while Butler went on a 9-2 run to claim a 32-24 advantage with just under four minutes (3:52) remaining in the opening stanza. UIC called a timeout, but Butler finished the half on an 8-3 run, taking a 40-27 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Butler's lead grew to 19 points (52-33) less than four minutes (16:01) into the second half, and ballooned to a game-high 30 points with 4:02 remaining. The Bulldogs out-scored the Flames in the second half, 39-25, scoring 20 of those points in the paint.
The Bulldogs out-rebounded UIC 39-32, and held a 46-20 scoring advantage in the paint. Butler also out-scored the Flames on the fast break, 10-0.
UIC will be idle until next Saturday (Feb. 26), when the Flames travel to Valparaiso in the regular season finale beginning at 7:05 p.m. CST. The game will be televised live on Comcast SportsNet Chicago.