Coming into the final day of the regular season on Saturday, the Butler men needed a win over Dodge City and a Colby win over Pratt in order to grab the final spot in the Region VI playoffs.
The Grizzlies did their part, holding off Dodge City for an exciting 94-92 win in overtime, but Pratt also won, beating Colby 82-77. That means Butler sees its season come to an end without a playoff bid for the first time under the current playoff system. The Grizzlies end their season at 10-20 with a 4-12 record in Jayhawk West Conference play.
Butler and Dodge City battled through a back-and-forth first half with each team leading by as many as six points before Dodge City took a 40-35 lead into halftime. The Grizzlies began the second half on a 9-0 run to regain the lead at 44-40.
With the game tied 50-50, Butler again went on another run, scoring seven straight points to take control of the contest. The Grizzles would go on to lead by as many as 15 points at 77-62 with 3:17 to play on a basket by Sean Osler.
Butler still was up by double digits, 78-68, with 1:42 to play before Dodge City outscored the Grizzlies 15-5 to end regulation and force the game into overtime. Finally, in the extra period, Butler got a basket from Jal'n Williams with less than a minute to play that proved to be enough to earn the win.
Cameron Cornelius led Butler with 17 points, highlighted by making 11 of his 12 free throws in the game. He was one of six Grizzlies in double figures as Sean Osler had 16, Andrew Victoria scored 14, Zac Bargen had 13, Justin Simmons added 11 and Jal'n Williams scored 10. Pratt had three players score at least 22 points, led by R.J. McGhee with a game-high 25.