USA TODAY Sports
Is 88.9 percent free-throw shooting good? If so, Butler's shooting from the charity stripe was good Saturday.
The No. 9 Butler Bulldogs shot nearly 90 percent from the free-throw line Saturday, taking an otherwise acceptable-but-pedestrian performance and turning it into a 75-68 win over the Rhode Island Rams.
Butler has now won two games in a row after dropping two of three in the wake of its gut-wrenching 64-63 win over the Gonzaga Bulldogs on Jan. 19.
Rotnei Clarke led all scorers with 23 points Saturday. The sharpshooting senior was 5-of-8 from 3-point range, but he also had seven turnovers. Roosevelt Jones finished with 18 points. He was a perfect 8-of-8 from the foul line, Butler's best free-throw shooter on a day of great free-throw shooting. Butler finished 24-of-27 from the line (88.9 percent).
Rhode Island led 32-30 at halftime, but quickly surrendered the lead, and Butler never looked back. Nikola Malesevic scored 18 points for the Rams. After an 82-80 double-overtime win over the Saint Louis Billikens on Jan. 19, the Rams have now lost four games in a row.