It was like Butler didn’t even show up in the first half. They were up ten, I’ll give them that. But it didn’t feel like ten. They shot 18 percent from behind the arc and were only ahead by four boards. This was a Northern Colorado team that went 10-21 last season.
Then, the second half started and everything was fine. But I was worried for a little bit, okay? The Bulldogs only allowed 21 points in the second half while scoring 48 of their own, to cruise to an 89-52 victory.
Kelan Martin led the way for Butler with 21 points and six rebounds. Tyler Lewis had himself an absolute NIGHT with 16 points, five assists and a perfect 7-7 from the field. Freshman Kamar Baldwin also chipped in 11 points in his first action as a Bulldog.
Northern Colorado stud Jordan Davis left the game early in the second half with some leg cramping. He had 25 points before his exit. I’d hate to know what the score would have been if he was in the entire second half...
But we aren’t going to talk about that because the Dawgs won, and the Big East is 8-0 on opening weekend.
Three things we learned
Don’t sleep on T-Lew
Tyler Lewis came to play tonight. After losing his starting job midway through last season to Martin after getting a concussion, he did not play as many minutes as he would have liked upon returning. Well, the chip on his shoulder is there, and he is using it to his full advantage. Lewis knocked down two threes tonight in a very short time span and was a perfect 7-7 from the field. The five assists weren’t too shabby either. Expect this from Lewis moving forward; he’s proven tonight to be an integral part of the offense.
Kelan Martin is POY
Okay, it may be too soon for this bold of a prediction, but Martin is still very, VERY good. He had 21 points tonight for the Dawgs along with six rebounds. Steady production from him every game is going to be key this season. He is going to need a monster game vs. Northwestern next Wednesday if they have any chance of getting the W.
Dawg defense was problematic at times
The beginning of this game was a score fest. At the under-16 timeout, we already had seen 26 points scored in the game. The Butler defense tightened in the second half, only allowing 27 points in the last 27 minutes of the game. Defense needs to be a focus of Chris Holtmann’s squad this week at practice before the Gavitt Games matchup with Northwestern. If they play defense like they did in the first half next Wednesday, Butler won’t fare too well against the Wildcats.