Jan. 15, 2004
Senior Mike Monserez scored a career-high 25 points and freshman Jamie Smalligan added a career-high 15 points to lead Butler to a 72-54 Horizon League victory over visiting Loyola in Hinkle Fieldhouse on Thursday, Jan. 15. The victory snapped Butler's five-game losing streak and lifted the Bulldogs to 5-9 on the season and 1-4 in league play. Loyola fell to 6-8 overall and 2-3 in the Horizon League.
The Bulldogs jumped to a 13-0 lead in the contest behind the hot hand of Smalligan, who was starting his third game for coach Todd Lickliter. The 7-0 center scored Butler's first five points and finished the first half with 12 points.
"Jamie hit some big shots to get us started," said Lickliter. "He worked hard this week in practice and on his own and it paid off."
Loyola climbed back into the game with a 16-3 scoring run late in the first half, and Butler led by just five points, 36-31, at halftime. The Ramblers stayed close through the first 11 minutes of the second half and trailed by just three, 49-46, with 8:24 remaining.
That's when Monserez took over. The 6-6 forward led the Bulldogs on a 23-8 closing run, scoring 12 points in the final eight minutes. He hit eight free throws down the stretch and finished the game with 16 of 16 from the charity stripe, missing Butler's single game record (Bobby Plump, 17-17 vs. Evansville, 1/11/58) by one free throw.
"They did feel good," smiled Monserez after the contest.
Monserez also led the Bulldogs with nine rebounds and six assists. Senior Duane Lightfoot came off the bench with 12 points. Paul McMillan led Loyola with 21 points, while Terrance Whiters added 15.
Butler was playing in Hinkle Fieldhouse for the first time in a month, and the Bulldogs boosted their 2003-04 record on their homecourt to 4-1.