INDIANAPOLIS (IN) - Butler (10-2) used dominant defense and solid inside play in order to win their final non-conference game of the season over NJIT 66-48.
Under the Butler pressure NJIT converted on just 18/60 (30%) field goals including 5/21 (23.8%) from three.
While it wasn't their best performance of the season, Butler won comfortably and look ready to start their Big East schedule.
Khyle Marshall led the Bulldogs with a game-high 21 points on 8/10 shooting. He also finished with 5 rebounds.
Butler outscored NJIT 36-24 in the paint.
It was a quiet game for sophomore Kellen Dunham. The Bulldog shooting guard scored just 9 points, well below his nearly 19 points per game average, but he was active in other areas. He collected 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, and a block.
Damon Lynn, the Highlanders' leading scorer, shot just 3/14 from the floor and finished with 11 points. Terrence Smith and Nigel Sydnor each added 8 points.
Butler started the game hot from the floor and jumped out to a 14-4 lead.
After cooling off from the perimeter, Butler continued to dominate the game. The Bulldogs smothered the Highlanders on the defensive end and led 29-16 at the break.
In the 2nd half, Butler continued to try and pull away, but NJIT started to shoot the ball better from the perimeter. Despite the resistance, Butler slowly increased its lead and won comfortably.
Junior Kameron Woods continued his strong play. The leading rebounder in the Big East had 12 rebounds and 9 points.
Freshman point guard Rene Castro saw extended minutes and looked like the prospect that Butler thought they were getting. Castro was aggressive off the bounce scoring 10 points (5/8 FGs) and grabbing 2 rebounds.
Butler shot 25/51 (49%) from the field including 3/13 (23.1%) from three. The Bulldogs did struggle from the free throw line. Butler converted on just 13/23 (56.5%) from the charity stripe.
NOTES: Butler had a huge advantage on the glass 45-27...Jackson Aldridge and Andrew Chrabascz each added 2 points off the bench...Elijah Brown was held scoreless in 11 minutes (0/3 FGs)...Sophomore Devontae Morgan saw his first action since the game against Manchester...Alex Barlow had 7 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists...Attendance was 6504.
It was over when...Erik Fromm and Alex Barlow hit back to back threes to extend Butler's lead to 42-23.
Stat of the Game: 45Butler dominated the glass collecting 45 rebounds and was efficient limiting NJIT's second chances on their 42 misses.