Oumou Toure in action during a game this season. Chandler Hart / Collegian file photo.
DREW FAVAKEH | STAFF REPORTER | firstname.lastname@example.org
A game after recording its lowest scoring output in three years, the Butler women’s basketball team bounced back with a 60-55 win over Ohio University on Nov. 30 in the Daytona Beach Invitational. Butler moved to 5-2, while Ohio dropped to 5-2.
Butler still had trouble putting the ball in the basket. For the third game in a row, Butler shot under 40% from the field. Their 16 field goals on 50 attempts — 32% — trumped last game’s eight field goals on 46 attempts, or 17.4%.
This game, coach Kurt Godlevske tinkered with the starting lineup. He brought junior guard Genesis Parker, who is second on the team in scoring, off the bench, starting freshman forward Oumou Toure in her place. It worked: in the first start of her collegiate career, Toure recorded a double-double with 13 points and a career-high 12 rebounds, while Parker scored 17 points, with 9-of-12 shooting from the free-throw line and 2-of-3 on 3-point shooting.
Last game, Parker and Kristen Spolyar combined to shoot 1-of-12 from the field and the bench combined to shoot 3-of-26. When the stars aren’t hitting, the bench has to step up.
That’s likely another reason Godlevske brought Parker off the bench. In games decided by five points or less, Butler has used nine players. This game, though, Butler used eight. There was one regular pulled from the rotation: junior guard Emilia Sexton. Though she has shown flashes — mainly as a 3-point shooter, making six on the season — that she has shot 5-of-20 from the field in the last five games is likely a factor in that decision. As the season moves on, who steps up in the absence of Tenley Dowell — who has a torn ACL — will be a notable progression.
Parker scored 10 of her 17 points in the second quarter, accounting for nearly half of Butler’s 24 points. Butler maintained the lead until the final seconds of the first half, going down 24-25 headed into halftime. It was Toure in the third quarter who stepped up, scoring nine points out of Butler’s 19. Ohio pulled within three points, but Butler held the lead from the start of the second half all the way until the end. In that final quarter, Spolyar scored nine of Butler’s 17 points.
Butler’s next game comes against the Akron Zips at Hinkle Fieldhouse on Sunday, Dec. 8 at 2 PM.