Butler beats Colby, 78-54, for fifth straight conference victory

Butler beats Colby, 78-54, for fifth straight conference victory

The Butler women survived an early shooting barrage by Colby, eventually wearing down the Trojans in a 78-54 win Saturday at the Power Plant.

Butler (11-5 overall, 8-5 conference) stays undefeated in the month of January with its fourth straight win and ran its winning streak to five straight.

For the first time in four games this month, Butler allowed more than 50 points in a game, but the defensive effort didn't miss that mark by much. The Grizzlies allowed 27 points in each half.

Colby (4-13, 2-11) scored all 12 of its points in the first quarter from beyond the arc. The Trojans led 6-2 early before Butler came back to take an 8-6 lead on a bucket by HaLee Roland with 3:57 left in the quarter.

Colby's Bailey Bixenman then hit back-to-back 3-pointers as the Trojans regained the lead at 12-8.

Butler would score the final five points of the period on a layup by Ericka Mattingly and a 3-pointer by Taylor Birch and led 13-12 going to the second quarter.

The Grizzlies continued to surge, scoring the first seven points of the second quarter as part of a 12-0 run. By that point, Butler had a lead it would never relinquish.

Butler pushed the lead into double digits after two free throws from Morgan Littlewood made it a 28-17 game with 4:09 left in the half. The Grizzlies would take a 36-27 lead into the break.

Butler would go on a 9-0 run to start the second half, leading by 18 after Jalise Smallwood made two free throws to make it a 45-27 game with 6:34 left in the third.

A Colby 11-2 run cut the deficit back to nine before Butler pushed the lead back to double digits at 56-41 after three quarters of play.

Butler, who led by as many as 26, extended the lead to 20 for the first time after a 3-pointer by Ericka Mattingly with 6:46 remaining.

Mattingly led Butler with 19 points, her second-highest scoring output of the season, only behind 22 points scored at Dodge City on Dec. 2. Vicky Duru scored a career-high 13 points off the bench. Taylor Birch added 12 for the Grizzlies.

Butler will next be on the road at Garden City on Wednesday for a 6:00 p.m. contest. The Grizzlies beat Garden City 77-53 in the conference opener at home on Nov. 11.