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Charlotte 49ers shock No. 10 Butler Bulldogs
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On February 13, 2013 @ 11:00 pm In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by David Woods, USA TODAY Sports
INDIANAPOLIS — Charlotte shot 54 percent and withstood a blizzard of 3-point shooting by Rotnei Clarke, holding off No. 10 Butler 71-67 Wednesday night and dealing a severe blow to the Bulldogs’ Atlantic 10 basketball title chances.
It was the first loss for Butler in 13 games at Hinkle Fieldhouse. The Bulldogs (20-5, 7-3) played without injured center Andrew Smith.
Pierria Henry scored 17 points for Charlotte (18-6, 6-4). The 49ers, who were 12-point underdogs, led 60-50 with less than four minutes left. Clarke’s long-range bombing nearly allowed Butler to pull out another improbable victory.
Clarke scored 15 of his 18 points in closing 3 ½ minutes, making four 3-pointers in that span. His 3-pointer cut the 49ers’ lead to 68-67 with seven seconds left. Henry made the first of two free throws with 6.7 left to put Charlotte ahead 69-67, then missed the second.
Butler called timeout with 3.1 seconds on the block. Chase Stigall’s inbounds pass intended for Khyle Marshall was intercepted, and two more Charlotte free throws closed the scoring.
Roosevelt Jones scored 17 points, Erik Fromm 13 and Kellen Dunham 12 for Butler. The Bulldogs received zero points off the bench and shot only 39 percent.
Fromm kept Butler in it in the second half with timely 3s, but the 49ers were relentless. Charlotte took what was then its biggest lead, 51-44, with 8:54 left when Willie Clayton picked up a loose ball under the rim and laid it in.
Charlotte capitalized on Smith’s absence to shoot 61 percent in the first half – mostly from inside — and take a 29-27 halftime lead. Butler shot 33 percent, and only 18 percent (2-of-11) on 3-pointers.
Fromm made his first start of the season in place of Smith.
The 49ers built a 16-9 lead before Butler responded with an 8-0 run capped by Jones’ three-point play. That put the Bulldogs ahead 17-16, but that advantage didn’t last long.
Charlotte reclaimed the lead by halftime. An apparent basket by Henry at the buzzer was waved off, then counted, and then waved off again by officials reviewing the television monitor.
David Woods writes for The Indianapolis Star, a … [For more on Charlotte 49ers shock No. 10 Butler Bulldogs, click here.]
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