Lancaster’s score capped a 14-play, 95-yard drive that began with 2:55 to play after JU punter Kody Thomas pinned the Bulldogs (8-2, 7-0) at their own 5 with a punt.
“We had it the whole time. We have the best defense in the conference that have kept us in it all year and we just had some silly mistakes (a pair of pass interference penalties in the final drive),’’ JU coach Kerwin Bell said. “And some of those flags were … that’s what you get on the road.’’
JU now is 6-3 overall and 4-2 and out of the PFL title chase.
The Dolphins, led by quarterback Trevius Folston who was making his first collegiate start in place of the injured Kade Bell, pulled to a 13-7 halftime lead on a pair of field goals by placekicker Dylan Lynch a touchdown run by Johnnie Hicks.
Lynch first connected on a 22-yard field goal with 9:42 to play in the first quarter in the rain, sleet and cold.
The Dolphins then took advantage of a shanked Butler punt and crafted a six-play, 31-yard drive that Hicks capped with a 3-yard run with 8:34 to play in the first half.
The Bulldogs later responded after recovering a fumbled punt by JU’s Terrance Bryant. Four plays and 25 yards later tight end Dylan Johnson scored on a 12-yard pass from quarterback Matt Lancaster.
Lynch kicked a 41-yard field goal for the 13-7 advantage with 2:29 to go in the half.
The Dolphins scored only three points in the second half as Lynch kicked 23-yard field goal.
“They tightened it down on us and we didn’t make the plays we made in the first half,’’ Bell said. “We tried a couple of big time plays, I knew we needed one more touchdown and we just didn’t hit them.’’
Folston wound up going 19-for-27 for 144r yards and running back Keith Dawson, coming back from an injury, rushed for 99 yards.
It was the first win ever for Butler over JU in eight tries.