CHANUTE, Kan. – League-leading Neosho powered past the Butler men on their home floor, winning 82-67 in a Jayhawk Conference matchup on Wednesday night.
Neosho scored the first 10 points of the game before a thunderous dunk by Daven Joseph got the Grizzlies on the scoreboard. The Panthers pushed the lead to 26-10 with 7:17 left in the first half, prompting a timeout to be called by Butler coach Bryan Miller.
The Grizzlies would claw back into the contest, getting as close as four points after a Travis House 3-pointer made it a 32-28 game with 30 seconds left in the half. Neosho would end the period with a 3-pointer of its own and led 35-28 at the break.
Butler scored first in the second half, as a Daven Joseph bucket made it 35-30, but Neosho would put the game away over the next 10 minutes, leading by as many as 25 at 68-43 lead with 9:16 to play.
Caelan Neal led the Grizzlies with 23 points in the loss. It is his fourth game this season with more than 20 points, one shy of his career high of 24 points scored at home on Nov. 7 against Redlands and on Dec. 9 at Seward.
Butler is now 11-9 overall and 3-6 in Jayhawk Conference play, while Neosho is 16-3 overall and 8-2 in conference. The Grizzlies continue to be on the road on Saturday, when they play at Coffeyville.