The Grizzlies dropped an absolute heartbreaker to the 10th-ranked Snow Badgers in a battle of two top 10 teams at a rainy and cold BG Products Stadium on Saturday, as a two point conversion scored by the Badgers in overtime proved decisive, as Snow grabbed the win, 50-49.
The Grizzlies gave up the first 28 points of the game and seemed to be in an insurmountable hole before managing to score 28 unanswered points of their own in a wild affair. Azhaun Dingle got the Grizzlies on the board with a four yard score and Butler managed to cut the lead to 14 just before halftime with a Jaelon Travis catch from Jake Wolff. The Grizzlies went into the locker room down 14.
"We had every opportunity to just sink and go belly up," head coach Brice Vignery said. "We just kept telling them one play at a time."
Down 42-35 with 17 seconds left, Butler fumbled the ball on the one yard line and looked to have come up just short in regulation. But the Badgers fumbled just one play later, and Malik Berry fell on the ball in the end zone, forcing a miraculous overtime.
Quavez Humphreys scored a touchdown in overtime to give Butler their first lead of the contest, but Snow scored one play later on a clever trick play, and punched it in for two to win the game.
It's the first time Butler has lost in overtime since 2014. The Grizzlies fall to 2-1 on the season.
It was an offensive game for both teams as Snow totaled 511 yards in the game while Butler finished with 422 total yards. Wolff passed for another 300+ yards, his second straight game over 300, finishing with 321 yards going 25-46 with four touchdowns.
AJ King led the way for Butler, earning 348 all purpose yards, including a 44-yard receiving touchdown and an 82-yard punt return for a touchdown. the fifth longest in program history. Quavez Humphreys finished the day with 90 receiving yards and two touchdowns.
"He's such a game changer," mentioned Vignery of AJ King. "Any time we can get the ball in his hands we need to do it."
Defensively, Norman Massey led for the Grizzlies finishing with 10 tackles in the loss. He had two tackles for loss, a fumble recovery and broke up a pass. Patrick Mooney had nine tackles in the game along with an interception, his first of the season. Malik Berry finished the game with six tackles and the fumble recovery for a touchdown.
The road gets no easier for Butler next week, as they will travel to Independence next Saturday for their third conference game of the season.
"It's always been a challenging place to play for us," said Vignery. "It's just about us putting one foot in front of the other. None of our goals have changed, we still have quality teams to play and we still control our own destiny."