First-Half Turnovers Costly in Men's Basketball's 71-55 Loss at Butler

First-Half Turnovers Costly in Men's Basketball's 71-55 Loss at Butler

Indianapolis, Ind. -- Senior Ashen Ward scored a game-high 21 points but the Youngstown State men's basketball team committed 17 turnovers and allowed 13 offensive rebounds in a 71-55 loss to Butler on Sunday afternoon at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

The Guins fall to 9-8 overall and 4-3 in the Horizon League while Butler improves to 10-9 overall and 4-3 in the league.

Sophomore Kendrick Perry was the only other YSU player to reach double figures with 10 points.

In the first half alone, the Guins committed 10 turnovers that led to 12 Butler points and gave up six offensive rebounds which gave the Bulldogs 12 more points.

The interior play of Butler's Andrew Smith and Kameron Woods presented problems for the Guins and the pair scored 20 and 10 points, repsectively. Woods also posted a double-double with 10 rebounds.

The Guins led early, 6-2, after 3-pointers by Blake Allen and DuShawn Brooks, but the Bulldogs scored 11 straight points to take a 13-6 lead with 14:26 left in the first half and trailed again.

Ward connected on two 3-pointers and a steal and layup by Perry brought the Guins within three, 17-14, with 11:13 to go.

A 12-5 run by Butler expanded the Bulldogs' lead to 10, 29-19, with 6:22 left and led by as many as 11, 34-23, with 1:55 to go before halftime.

The Guins went into the lockerroom down seven 34-27, after a tip-in by Kendrick Perry and a jumper by Nate Perry.

After a Chase Stigall 3-pointer opened the second half scoring to put Butler up 10-, 37-27, Damian Eargle's two basketbal cut the lead down to six, 37-31, at the 18:43 mark.

Butler then outscored the Guins 15-3 over the next nine minutes to build an 18-point cushion, 52-34, with 9:55 to go.

The Bulldogs went up by as many as 20 points, 56-36, at the 8:18 mark before the Guins used a 16-6 run to slice the deficit down to nine, 62-53 with 2:37 left.

Ward drilled his fifth 3-pointer, was fouled and converted the free throw, then Kendrick Perry stole the in-bound pass and his layup capped the Guins' run.

Butler, though, made seven of their last 10 free throws to seal the game.

YSU returns home to host Milwaukee, Friday, Jan. 20, at 7:05 p.m. at the Beeghly Center. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3.com and 570 WKBN-AM.