Butler was in position to not only jump into the Big East lead all by themselves but to earn a #10 ranking for the first time this season. Georgetown had other ideas. The Hoyas came into Hinkle and knocked off #11 Butler 85-81. Kelan Martin snapped out of his slump by scoring 22 points on 8-15 shooting to lead all scorers. LJ Peak of Georgetown matched Martin with 22 points of his own.
Player of the Game: Andrew Chrabascz
Chrabascz was outstanding on the offensive end, and probably should have gotten more touches. The senior scored a very efficient 16 points on 5-7 shooting from the field and 6-6 from the foul stripe. He did only grab 2 rebounds, but to be fair, there weren't a lot of rebounds available in this one. Chrabascz got several minutes at center in the second half with Wideman in foul trouble, and he was simply too agile for the slower Georgetown bigs. This was the best offensive game Chrabascz has had in a while.
Georgetown Is Good
They were tonight anyways. Butler fans will probably overreact to losing at home to the 9th place team in the conference. Butler Georgetown, coming off a 20 point blowout of 3rd place Creighton, played up to their potential. The Hoya team on the floor today was a great college basketball team. They shot 64% from the floor, 50% from the arc, and 83% from the line. Butler certainly didn't play their best defense, but I don't think they played terrible defense either. Coach Holtmann didn't agree after the game, but I don't think the defense was near as bad as the boxscore makes it out to be.
Can't Blame The Offense
It's not often that Butler scores 81 and loses. In fact, it's never happened under Chris Holtmann before. Butler shot 55% from the floor, 39% from the arc, and 88% from the line. And pretty much all of that came in the halfcourt, since the Dawgs weren't getting many stops to lead to transition baskets. Everyone except Baldwin (5-14) shot 50% or better from the floor. The final tally shows 1.23 points per possession. If this offense shows up in March, Butler will go a long way.
Kelan Martin's Home/Road Splits Continue
Kelan Martin continued his trend of struggling on the road but scoring well at home. He had 22 points on 8-15 shooting. Unfortunately he couldn't deliver when it mattered most. He forced a jumpshot and was whistled for a charge in a 2 possession swing that saw Georgetown take a 5 point lead they would never give up. Still, Butler needs Martin to be an offensive threat and he was just that tonight. He scored at all 3 levels and was the force Butler needs him to be.
Big East Hopes Hanging By A Thread
Butler would have been in 1st place all alone with a win. Now they are a game behind Villanova in the loss column. This backs Butler into a corner. They probably have to win on the road against Villanova if they want a shot at the Big East crown. It's unlikely Villanova will lose 2 more conference games if Butler can't help themselves. Butler figures to be an 8-10 point underdog in that one. Right now though, Butler just hopes that game will still be meaningful to the Big East standings once it arrives.