INDIANAPOLIS — Myles Powell scored 19 of his 29 points in the second half and Romaro Gill matched his career high with 17 points to lead No. 18 Seton Hall back from a 10-point halftime deficit for a 78-70 victory at No. 5 Butler on Wednesday night.
The Pirates (13-4, 5-0 Big East) closed the game on a 13-4 run to win their seventh in a row. They are the only conference team still unbeaten in league play.
Quincy McKnight had 11 points, 13 assists and seven rebounds.
Kamar Baldwin had 19 points and six assists to lead the Bulldogs (15-2, 3-1). Jordan Tucker had 14 points and 10 rebounds as Butler’s six-game winning streak ended.
Powell and Gill dominated the second half.
They helped to quickly cut a 40-30 deficit to five, and when when the 7-foot-2 Gill asserted himself in the post the Bulldogs couldn’t match up. He scored nine points in a 15-6 run that ended with Powell’s 3 to give Seton Hall a 58-57 lead with 8:14 to play.
It looked like the Bulldogs might rally when Sean McDermott completed a three-point play to give Butler a 66-65 lead with 3:48 remaining — after Gill picked up his fifth foul.
Instead, the Powell and Jared Rhoden knocked down 3s during the final spurt to help the Pirates pull away late.
Seton Hall: The Pirates showed some real grit Wednesday. After playing poorly most of the first half, they leaned on Gill to make an impact in the middle and that opened things up for Powell and his teammates on the outside. It’s quite a combination, even against one of the nation’s top defenses.
Butler: The Bulldogs came into the game giving up 54.4 points and allowed 48 in the second half. That wasn’t the only problem. They struggled taking care of the ball, didn’t shoot particularly well and appeared when trying to shoot over Gill.
It was just a bad time for sub-par night.
Seton Hall: The Pirates have beaten two top 10 teams this season. ... Rhoden added 13 points on a night Powell made five 3s. ... The Pirates were 5 of 17 on 3s in the first half and finished 9 of 31. ... Seton Hall has won five consecutive conference games in the same season for the first time since 2008-09.
Butler: Still won the rebounding battle 36-34 but wound up allowing a season-high point total. ... Sean McDermott had 11 points as the Bulldogs went 6 of 21 on 3s. ... Butler fell to 9-1 at Hinkle Fieldhouse, playing on their home court for the first time as a top-five team since the arena opened in 1928.
Seton Hall completes a two-game road trip Saturday at St. John’s.
Butler visits DePaul on Saturday, starting a two-game road trip.