Indianapolis — Roosevelt Jones, Tyler Lewis and Andrew Chrabascz helped No. 17 Butler to a big lead over No. 9 Purdue.
Then they almost gave it away.
The Bulldogs nearly blew a 16-point lead in the final six minutes before Lewis made two free throws with 20.9 seconds left on Saturday night to send Butler to a 74-68 win that ended the Boilermakers’ perfect start.
“It certainly was a gritty effort by our guys,” Butler coach Chris Holtmann said. “Purdue made it difficult for us late and we didn’t necessarily capitalize on free throws like we would have liked to.”
Jones had 19 points, 11 rebounds and five assists in Butler’s sixth straight win. Lewis, a transfer from North Carolina State, matched his career high with 17 points. Chrabascz added 16 points and five rebounds and finished the game after leaving twice with an injured left knee.
Jones, Lewis and Chrabascz combined for 15 points in a 17-4 spurt that put Purdue (11-1) in its biggest deficit of the season at 53-37 with 9:40 left.
“People always doubt my game, so I try to come out and play hard every game just to prove that I can play with anybody in the country,” Jones said.
The trio also helped make up for an awful shooting performance by Kellen Dunham, the Big East’s leading scorer. Dunham missed all 12 of his shots from the field and had a season-low two points.
The Bulldogs (9-1), the nation’s second-highest scoring team, went 4 of 16 on 3-pointers and shot 39.7 percent from the field. But they also forced 18 turnovers and held the Boilermakers’ two 7-footers in check inside.
Purdue’s problem was finding good looks against Butler’s defense.
The Boilermakers pulled within seven on Kendall Stephens’ 3-pointer with 2:31 to play. Already out of timeouts, coach Matt Painter instructed his players to start fouling and the usually good-shooting Bulldogs struggled at the line down the stretch.
Purdue took advantage. Freshman Caleb Swanigan made back-to-back 3-pointers to trim the deficit to 70-67 with 1:04 left and Dunham had a rare turnover on the ensuing possession, giving the Boilermakers a chance to tie the score.
Only this time, the Bulldogs fouled Stephens, who missed the second of two free throws.
Lewis made his free throws and Butler closed out the scoring with a breakaway layup.
Swanigan finished with 25 points and 11 rebounds, while A.J. Hammons had 12 points and seven rebounds.
“They understood how to manufacture some points and how to get things done, where we had to show more patience and discipline,” Painter said. “We didn’t show that.”
No. 6 Maryland 82, Princeton 61: At Baltimore, Jake Layman scored a season-high 19 points and Robert Carter fueled a second-half surge that enabled Maryland to pull away. Sophomore Jaylen Brantley scored a career-high 14, Carter added 12 and Diamond Stone and Rasheed Sulaimon each scored 11 for the Terrapins (10-1). Melo Trimble contributed seven points and 10 assists. Layman went 7 for 11 from the floor and grabbed eight rebounds.
Ohio State 74, No. 4 Kentucky 67: Keita Bates-Diop scored 14 points and Ohio State held off a furious second-half rally in the CBS Sports Classic at Barclays Center in New York. The Buckeyes (6-5) led by 16 points with 11:26 to play but had to withstand not only Kentucky’s rally but a crowd of 16,311 mostly Wildcats’ fans making so much noise it sounded like Rupp Arena. Freshman Jamal Murray had a season-high 33 points for the Wildcats (9-2) and kept the rally going with 3-pointer after 3-pointer. He finished 7 of 9 from beyond the arc, all the makes in the second half.