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Blue Demons Win Thriller at Butler

Jan. 9, 2014

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INDIANAPOLIS - Trailing by 11 points with just under four minutes left in the second half, visiting DePaul put together a furious comeback to force overtime and outlasted Butler in a 99-94 double-overtime thriller on Thursday night.

DePaul trailed most of the evening, but never let the Bulldogs get away. Butler stretched the advantage to 12 at the 12-minute mark of the second half and then 11 at 73-62 on a Khyle Marshall dunk with 3:46 on the clock.

That would be the last time Butler scored in regulation.

Tommy Hamilton IV started the 11-0 run with on a three-pointer followed by Cleveland Melvin with a trifecta of his own. The two sides went scoreless until Billy Garrett Jr. knocked down three-pointer with 54 seconds left to pull the Blue Demons to within a pair at 73-71.

After a Kameron Woods turnover, Melvin scored on a short jumper to tie the game and the Blue Demons held on for one last defensive stand to force overtime.

DePaul (9-8, 1-3 BIG EAST) took control early in the first overtime following a Kellen Dunham free throw as Melvin scored before Hamilton put back his own miss and drove the lane for a lay-in on consecutive possessions to put DePaul up, 79-77.

Hamilton continued his personal run after Brandon Young found him wide open in the corner and the 6-10 freshman drained his third three-pointer of the night. Hamilton went on to finish with a 17-point, 12-rebound double-double.

A dunk by Melvin gave the Blue Demons a six-point advantage with 28 seconds left, but Butler wasn't quite ready for the evening to finish at Hinkle Fieldhouse. The Bulldogs reeled off seven points in 17 seconds around two Garrett free throws with a Dunham three making the score, 86-85, in favor of DePaul with 11 seconds left.

On DePaul's last possession of the first overtime, Melvin was fouled and made one of two free throws and left nine seconds on the clock with DePaul holding a two-point advantage. DePaul forced Dunham into a tough final shot and the ensuing rebound found Jackson Aldridge who just beat the buzzer with a 12-footer to force a second extra frame.

The second overtime started the same as the first with the Blue Demons grabbing a five-point lead over the first two minutes. Dunham kept Butler (10-5, 0-3 BIG EAST) in the game as he knocked down his final three-pointer of the night to tie the score at 94-94 with 1:09 left.

That would be the final tally for the Bulldogs as a Melvin jumper, a defensive stop and two Brandon Young free throws sealed the game for DePaul.

Melvin finished with 30 points and eight rebounds to go along with Hamilton's second career double-double. Garrett scored a career-high 22 points with five boards and five assists while Young finished with 18 points and three steals.

Dunham also scored 30 points and Woods added a 17-point, 14-rebound for Butler.

Up next for DePaul is a Tuesday night game against St. John's. Start time at Allstate Arena is scheduled for 6 p.m. For ticket information, contact the DePaul ticket office at (773) 325-SLAM.

Notes: DePaul is 37-38 all-time in overtime games and 2-0 this season... the game was the 17th in program history of two or more overtime periods... DePaul's last multi-OT game was a 90-82 loss in triple overtime against St. John's on March 5, 2010... DePaul last multi-OT win was a 76-69 double overtime win against Dayton in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on March 18, 2004... Cleveland Melvin scored at least 30 for the fourth time in his career... Melvin (691 rebs.) passed Jim Flemming (689 rebs., 1958-61) for 18th on the all-time rebound list... he also moved into fourth on the blocked shots list... Billy Garret Jr.'s 22 points were a career high and his first 20-point game... Tommy Hamilton IV posted career highs of 17 points and 12 rebounds in his second career double-double... the win snapped a season-high three-game losing streak... the game was the first between DePaul and Butler in BIG EAST play... DePaul leads the series, 6-1... Thursday was the first meeting since Feb. 1981.