August 6, 2009

Bulldogs Fall To Swiss National Team In Italy

Butler shook off a slow start and rallied to take a third-quarter lead, but couldn’t hold on and wound up falling to a strong Swiss National Team, 76-72, in the first game of a four-game tour of Italy on Thursday, Aug. 6.  The Bulldogs will meet the Swiss team again on Friday, Aug. 7, afternoon.

The Swiss team, which included NBA player Thabo Sefolosha, built a 20-16 lead after one quarter and then stretched that margin to nine points, 37-28, at halftime.  But the Bulldogs, playing less than 30 hours after arriving in Italy, stormed back to take a 52-51 lead after three quarters.

The lead didn’t stand.  Switzerland used a spurt midway through the fourth quarter to regain the advantage and went on to post the four-point win.

Sophomore Shelvin Mack led the Bulldogs with 15 points, while juniors Matt Howard and Zach Hahn each added 11.  Sophomore Gordon Hayward chipped in with nine points, and redshirt freshman Emerson Kampen, playing in his first game for the Bulldogs, added eight.   Nine different players scored for the Bulldogs.

The Swiss squad was led by David Ramseier with 26 points, while Sefolosha, who’s a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder, added 16.

Bulldogs Bits:  The Bulldogs spent their first day (Wednesday) in Italy sight-seeing in the Lake Como area.  The team took a 45-minute walking tour of downtown Como and then traveled to the small village of Brunate, 720 meters above Como, for a spectacular view of the city.  After a team meal at 7 p.m., the players and coaches returned to their hotel for an early evening prior to the opening game.