Senior middle blocker Maureen Bamiro ended her career at Hinkle Fieldhouse the same way she began it—with a bang.
Every set in Butler’s 3-0 win over Illinois-Chicago Saturday began and ended with a point from Bamiro, the lone senior Bulldog, including the match-clinching kill. Bamiro has started every match since her sophomore season and 118 of 121 overall.
The match was Butler’s (12-13, 8-5) second consecutive win and last home match of the season. The Bulldogs defeated the Flames (14-11, 7-6) 25-21, 25-10 and 25-23.
Bamiro, who is fourth in Butler history with a .269 career hitting percentage and ninth in blocks per set and all-time block assists, was honored during a break between the second and third sets in front of a crowd of 280.
“It’s a bittersweet feeling, but I’m content being done,” Bamiro said. “In my four years here, I’ve accomplished so much. That fulfillment is enough for me.”
Last season, the Bulldogs were crowned Horizon League champions with a conference record of 14-3 and advanced to the NCAA tournament for the second time in school history.
This year, a late-season surge has catapulted Butler to a third-place tie with Valparaiso in the Horizon League standings. The Bulldogs won seven of their last eight games, including a 3-1 win over the Crusaders Friday.
Following Saturday’s win against UIC, Butler coach Sharon Clark recognized the impact that Bamiro has had on the program over the past four years.
“She has been a dominant middle her entire career,” Clark said. “The biggest thing that she does is she shows people how to work hard. She has a great work ethic in the gym and has really shown the younger players how much hard work will pay off for them.”
Now the Bulldogs are focused on closing out the regular season and excelling in the Horizon League tournament, which begins Nov. 18.
“The biggest thing for us is consistency—going after teams and being the aggressor,” Clark said. “We’ve got to continue to do that, and things will keep going our way.”
Butler will face off against Wisconsin-Green Bay tomorrow and Loyola Saturday.
The Bulldogs defeated the Phoenix (10-14, 6-6) and Ramblers (4-18, 1-11) once each time this season.