NCAA

Saint Louis knocks off No. 9 Butler 75-58

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Saint Louis knocks off No. 9 Butler 75-58

ST. LOUIS (AP) Jordair Jett matched his career best with 19 points and Saint Louis pressured No. 9 Butler into a season-worst 23 turnovers, recording the program's biggest upset in nine years with a 75-58 victory Thursday night that had fans storming the court to celebrate.

Dwayne Evans added 15 points on 6-for-8 shooting and five rebounds for the Billikens (15-5, 4-2 Atlantic-10), who fed off just the fourth sellout at 5-year-old Chaifetz Arena and led by double digits most of the game. Saint Louis shot 50 percent.

Rotnei Clarke had 17 points for Butler (17-4, 4-2) but also had five turnovers. Andrew Smith added 12 points and six rebounds for the Bulldogs, who have lost four games this season, three by 15 or more points.

Butler is the highest-ranked opponent to play at Saint Louis, led by interim coach Jim Crews with a roster assembled by the late Rick Majerus, since No. 2 North Carolina in 2006-07. The Bulldogs are Saint Louis' biggest victim since a 1-point upset over No. 2 Louisville on Feb. 12, 2003 at the Scottrade Center.

Jett, who was 8 for 12 with two 3-pointers, also scored 19 points against Villanova on Nov. 25, 2011.

More important was the other end of the court. Saint Louis leads the conference in scoring defense, allowing 57.8 points.

Butler was saddled with 16 turnovers in the first half, only two shy of its season high, combined with 37.5 percent shooting that added up to a 34-23 halftime lead for Saint Louis. Clarke had nine points and four turnovers and Kyhle Marshall was held to two points with five turnovers.

On its first 29 possessions, Butler had six baskets and 16 turnovers. Down 17 points late in the half, the Bulldogs finally woke up with nine quick points in a stretch of 1:07 before Jett, a reserve who had 13 points in 13 minutes on 5-for-6 shooting, answered with a 3-pointer with 7 seconds to make it 34-23.

Butler was down 14-12 when Clarke scored off a drive with 8:14 to go. The Bulldogs had just one more basket over the 7 1/2 minutes and not that many chances, either, with an uncharacteristic rash of mistakes forced by Saint Louis' aggressive, overplaying defense.

Jett had a layup and 3-pointer in a 14-0 run capped by Rob Loe's 3-pointer with 3:20 to go that put the Billikens up 31-14.

Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

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Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

PITTSBURGH -- No. 1 Virginia allowed just seven points in the first half and secured the regular-season Atlantic Coast Conference title outright with a 66-37 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Freshman guard De'Andre Hunter came off the bench to lead the Cavaliers (26-2, 14-1 ACC) with 14 points in a game that didn't take big offensive efforts from Virginia's regulars. Of the five starters, only guard Ty Jerome exceeded his season average with 13 points.

The game was never competitive, as Virginia started on an 8-0 run and Pitt didn't make a field goal until Jared Wilson-Frame hit a 3-pointer at the midway point of the first half.

Virginia coach Tony Bennett rested most of his regulars in the second half. Reserve Nigel Johnson added 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting.

Parker Stewart led Pitt (8-22, 0-17) with 12 points, all on 3-pointers. Pitt had next to no presence inside. The Panthers were outscored 28-8 in the paint and out-rebounded 36-24. Seven of Pitt's 11 made field goals were from beyond the arc.

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3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

The Caps could not shake Buffalo for two periods, but a dominant finish on Saturday helped them pull away for a 5-1 win. Here's how they finally put away the Sabres.

A quick start

Strong starts go a long way towards helping a team in the middle of a slump. It's a confidence boost for a group in desperate need of one and the Caps got that boost on Saturday from Evgeny Kuznetsov. Kuznetsov used his wheels to zip in behind the defense and score just 50 seconds into the game. Washington led 1-0 at the end of the first, just the second time in 19 games they have held a lead after the opening 20 minutes.

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Andre Burakovsky snapping a second period slump

It looked in the second period like the Caps were caught trying to protect the lead again, but Andre Burakovsky woke the team back up with his incredible highlight end-to-end goal. It really looked like Buffalo was going to tie the game at one, but instead, Burakovsky extended the lead to two. Going end to end the way he did shows a player who is starting to play with some confidence, something Burakovsky has lacked for much of the season.

Ovechkin's two-goal third period

Buffalo would not go away. Sam Reinhart got the Sabres on the board just 14 seconds into the third period and suddenly the Caps found themselves in a one-goal game again. But Ovechkin ended any hopes for the comeback as he struck in the top corner of the net on the power play from the office. He would later add a deflection goal to extend the lead to 5-1, giving a scuffling Washington team the dominant win they so sorely needed.