Butler advances past Washington State in Old Spice Classic

MATTHEW VANTRYON | STAFF REPORTER

Senior forward Khyle Marshall and sophomore guard Kellen Dunham scored career-highs and carried Butler to the semifinals of the Old Spice Classic with a 76-69 win against Washington State on Thanksgiving Day.

Dunham was the Bulldogs’ (5-0) leading scorer with a career-high 32 points, the most ever in an Old Spice Classic game. Dunham was 6-9 from beyond the arc.

Marshall also dominated on the offensive end, scoring a career-high 30 points and grabbing five rebounds.

Dunham and Marshall scored 62 of Butler’s 76 points.

Marshall said Dunham’s hard work paid off on the court.

“He’s the hardest worker on our team, and no one’s made a bigger jump from year one to year two,” Marshall said.

Marshall was a dominating presence in the opening half, netting eight of Butler’s first 10 points while scoring 14 in the half.

Dunham added eight points of his own, including hitting both three-pointers he attempted.

Butler’s defense was able to contain the Cougars’ (2-3) offense to 41 percent shooting from the floor in the first half. Washington State led the nation in three point attempts (115) coming into the game, but was 0-8 from deep in the opening half.

Butler was able to force miscues, as the Cougars committed eight turnovers in the opening half and 13 in the game. Butler had four steals in the half, and scored 12 points off of turnovers.

The Bulldogs took a 30-26 lead into the locker room at halftime.

The Cougars picked up the pace offensively in the second half.

Junior guard DaVonte Lacy provided a spark, scoring 26 points in the contest. Lacy hit four of eight from beyond the arc.

Washington State shot nearly 58 percent from the floor in the second half.

Like so many other Bulldogs contests, this game went down to the wire.

However, Butler was able to use a 10-0 run late in the game to come away with the victory.

Dunham scored 10 of the team’s final 14 points, including five consecutive points with under a minute to play to give Butler some breathing room.

Butler coach Brandon Miller said he attributes the win to the team’s unity.

“Sometimes, those tight-knit teams come together down the stretch,” Miller said. “I thought that’s what we saw tonight from our guys.”

Butler will face No. 5 Oklahoma State tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. in the semifinals. The Cowboys defeated Purdue 97-87 Thursday afternoon behind 30 points from sophomore guard Marcus Smart.

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