Women’s basketball splits HL weekend

The Butler women’s basketball team defeated Milwaukee Saturday after losing a tough contest last Thursday to Green Bay at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

The women were able to bounce back when they hosted the Panthers (7-13, 4-5 HL).

The Bulldogs (14-7, 8-1 HL) knocked the Panthers under .500 in the conference with a 72-64 victory.

In the process, Butler also gave Couture her 400th career win.

“It’s an accomplishment that I was able to reach because I’ve been fortunate to work for two great schools in Presbyterian and Butler,” Couture said. “I’ve been fortunate enough to work with great assistant coaches and coach a lot of great players.”

Couture, who is in her ninth year as the Butler head coach, previously coached at Presbyterian College in South Carolina for 13 seasons.

It proved to be a night to remember for junior guard Devin Brierly as well, who scored a career-high 19 points.

“Devin realizes that we need her to score,” Couture said. “She was very aggressive.”

Senior forward Chloe Hamilton and senior guard Alyssa Pittman also helped propel the Bulldogs to an important conference win by combining for 15 points.

Sophomore forward Becca Bornhorst led Butler with seven rebounds.

The Bulldogs turned the ball over a season low eight times Saturday, which was a major difference from two days before against Green Bay

The No. 21/16 Phoenix (20-1, 9-0 HL) began the game tied with the Bulldogs for first place in the Horizon League.

While the outcome wasn’t what the Bulldogs had hoped for, a 66-62 loss, Couture said she was proud of her team’s effort and resilience.

“We were close,” she said. “There are no moral victories, but if we put halves together, who knows what would have happened?”

Butler, who was down by at least 10 points several times throughout the game, never gave up. Their defense swarmed and their offense was efficient at key times during in the game to make things close near the end.

“I thought our press helped us,” Couture said. “We made some key steals that we were able to capitalize off of.”

Hamilton scored 26 points and picked up 10 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season.

Hamilton did not miss a shot from the field, finishing the game 11-for-11.

“Chloe did what a senior should do—step up and make plays when her team needed her to,” Green Bay head coach Matt Bollant said.

The rest of the Bulldogs, however, provided little help.

The Bulldogs had more rebounds and fewer turnovers than the Phoenix but did not make use of the advantage. The Bulldogs shot 11-for-42 without Hamilton.

Senior guard Brittany Bowen led that support with 17 points on 6-of-15 shooting, and senior guard Alyssa Pittman scored nine.

Green Bay had two players score more than 20 points—senior guard Celeste Hoewisch and junior forward Julie Wojta.

Couture said that they could take away some positive things from the Green Bay game.

“We’re going to learn from this game and finish off the season strong,” Couture said.

The Bulldogs host Detroit (9-11, 3-6 HL) Thursday at Hinkle Fieldhouse at 7 p.m., and Wright State (13-7, 6-3 HL) Saturday for their annual Pink Zone Game to promote breast cancer awareness.

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