NCAA Tournament: Butler Bumps Off Syracuse

The Butler Bulldogs are one step away from claiming a place in the Final Four. Gordon Hayward scored 17 points as Butler raced to an early lead, then held off a late surge by No. 1 seed Syracuse to become the first team into the Last 8.

With the victory, the Bulldogs will advance to the West Regional Finals for the first time in history. Butler will try to book a Final-Four slot when it faces the winner of the Kansas State-Xavier tussle. The Orange, who trailed by ten at halftime, 25-35, took their first lead on a three-pointer by Big East player of the year Wes Johnson.

However, Syracuse could not hold on to the lead, as Willie Veasley came to life late in the game, scoring five points in an 11-0 Bulldogs run that effectively made the Orange the second top seed to fall. Veasley eventually ended the night with 13 points while Shelvin Mack chipped in 14 points for the Bulldogs. Johnson finished his season with 17 points and 9 rebounds.