INDIANAPOLIS – Butler’s defense shut down St. Bonaventure for the first seven minutes of the second half to take charge and the 14th-ranked Bulldogs went on to a 77-58 victory in the first game ever between the Atlantic 10 Conference schools Wednesday night in Hinkle Fieldhouse.
Demetrius Conger, Bona’s season scoring leader, had 20 points in the loss, hitting six of his seven shots.
After taking a 39-30 halftime lead, the Bulldogs (19-4, 6-2 A-10) limited Bona (10-11, 3-5) to 1-for-8 shooting to start the second half and opened a 56-35 lead inside of eight minutes. The Bonnies led early, 11-7, before a three-point shot by Butler’s outside shooting ace Rotnel Clarke gave his team the lead for good, 14-13.
Butler had a 34-25 advantage on the boards and shot 11 for 26 from three-point range, including 3 of 6 by Clarke, a transfer from Arkansas, and 3 of 4 by senior Chase Stigall. The Bulldogs had four scorers in double figures led by Clarke’s 16.