Despite a back and forth affair for much of the afternoon, the Villanova Wildcats emerged victorious yet again at home Saturday, winning 77-67 over the visiting Butler Bulldogs.
The No. 1 team in the country looked brilliant again on Senior Day with five players scoring at least seven points. It was the juniors who took center stage, as guard Josh Hart scored 22 points and added 12 rebounds, as the Silver Spring, Maryland native continues to look like a viable BIG EAST Player of the Year candidate. Junior forward Kris Jenkins joined Hart in double figures, scoring 20 points and continuing his hot streak of play.
Ryan Arcidiacono scored nine and had eight assists in his final game at The Pavilion.
Butler was aided by the play of Roosevelt Jones and Kelan Martin. Martin added 19 points to keep up his stellar play of late while Jones dropped 16 in the loss.
1. Villanova cannot be stopped at The Pavilion
It doesn't matter the opponent. If you walk into The Pavilion as a visiting foe, there's a mighty good chance you'll lose. The Wildcats took down yet another team they welcomed inside their home venue on Saturday afternoon, adding the Butler Bulldogs to an already lengthy list of opponents they have dismissed.
It's now been three years, two weeks and three days since Villanova has suffered a loss at The Pavilion, as the 2012-13 Providence Friars are still the only team to hand them defeat on their campus.
2. Kelan Martin is a stud
Reaffirmed on Saturday was the notion that Butler Bulldogs sophomore forward Kelan Martin is still damn good. Martin chipped in a team-high 19 points in the losing effort whilst showing no fear from the perimeter, taking nine 3-point attempts Saturday afternoon. The Louisville, Kentucky native is only getting better each time he steps on the floor and while he wasn't as efficient, he was a key in the Bulldogs' late run in the second half, though not enough to take down the 'Cats at home.
3. Josh Hart continues to make a run for BIG EAST Player of the Year
Eat your Hart out (ha ha ha), Kris Dunn and/or Ben Bentil. Villanova's junior guard Josh Hart stepped up big time in the Wildcats' encounter with the Bulldogs on Saturday afternoon. The Silver Spring, Maryland native dropped 22 points on a mark of 8-of-16 from the field. While a lot of the talk has been dominated by two of the Friars, Hart's a name you'll not want to forget and if he keeps playing at this high a level, then Hart may be taking home the trophy next month.