MUBB loss at Butler secures first losing season since 1990-91

Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.
Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.

The Marquette men’s basketball team secured its first losing season since 1990-91 with the team’s 73-52 loss to No. 23 Butler Wednesday night.

Marquette (11-16, 3-12) saw the return of graduate student Matt Carlino after he sat out four games with concussion symptoms. Senior Juan Anderson also returned to the game after his brief stint on the bench after he rolled an ankle in practice late last week. Carlino notched 10 points, while Anderson took just one shot in six minutes of playing time.

While the Golden Eagles were back to full strength, the game felt much like Saturday’s matchup against Villanova. Butler jumped out to a 4-0 lead to start the game. The squads traded baskets, with Butler never totally pulling away. The Golden Eagles got within one point with 12:12 remaining in the half, but a following five-point surge kept Marquette at arms length. Neither squad got any real momentum in the first half and Butler carried a 37-30 lead into the half.

A major reason why Butler was able to build a lead was because of undisciplined play by Marquette. The Golden Eagles sent Butler to the line 14 times in the first half, while Marquette was able to get to the charity stripe just three times. Butler turned those trips into 10 points, while the Golden Eagles only got one point from the free throw line.

As soon as the second started, it was Butler’s half. The two squads continued to trade baskets until Kellen Dunham took over the game. With Marquette down just three points, Dunham hit two three-pointers in twenty seconds to give Butler a nine-point lead. The baskets ignited the Butler offense and Marquette could never fully recover.

Fischer was the focal point of the Golden Eagle offense, playing well on both sides of the ball. He had seven points by halftime, and was a big proponent of Marquette getting points in the paint. However, he got into foul trouble and was forced to sit out with three fouls early in the second. With Fischer off the court, Butler added to its lead while Marquette’s offense stalled.

Dunham continued to spark the Butler offense, as he hit another three-pointer to put Butler ahead by 17 points with 5:55 remaining. He finished with 22 points, totaling 39 points against the Golden Eagles in just two games. Butler put it on cruise control to end the game, easily blowing out the Golden Eagles.

Fischer led Marquette with 17 points. Carlino and redshirt freshman Duane Wilson were the only other Marquette players in double-digits with 10 each. As a whole, Marquette shot 50 percent from the field, but took 13 fewer shots than Butler did. The team also only shot 38.9 percent from the field in the second half, including going 0-for-5 from the three-point line. The Bulldogs also shot 50 percent from the field, but shot 60 percent from behind the arc.

With the loss, Marquette now is dead last in the Big East. The Golden Eagles travel to Providence for a Sunday matinee matchup with the Friars. Tip-off is at 2 p.m.