Hinkle Magic returns for exhibition win over Ohio Northern: Beyond the Box Score

Sophomore forward Connor Turnbull scored nine points off the bench for Butler on Oct. 28. Photo by Makenna Frias. 

SARAH HOHMAN | SPORTS EDITOR | shohman@butler.edu 

The Dawgs opened up their season with a 78-46 win against Ohio Northern in an exhibition match at Hinkle on Saturday, Oct. 28. 

With an offseason full of moving pieces, there was uncertainty on who head coach Thad Matta would start. Four of the seven transfers on the team were in the starting lineup. This included junior guard Pierre Brooks, senior forward Jahmyl Telfort, senior guard Posh Alexander and senior guard DJ Davis. They were joined by returning fifth-year center Jalen Thomas

Matta emphasized that he wanted to get everyone out on the floor and highlighted where they excelled as a team. 

“It was good for us to go against somebody else,” Matta said. “We were able to play a lot of guys — get a lot of guys some experience out there. I thought our defense was pretty good at times; they brought the shot clock into it so there weren’t a ton of possessions. We’ve got to clean up the 13 turnovers, but we have some good stuff to build on.” 

It will be interesting to see if Matta switches up the rotation in the next exhibition game. 

Balanced offense 

The Bulldogs shot 58 percent from the field as a team. Seven players posted between eight and 13 points on the night. 44 of the team’s points came in the paint. The Dawgs also capitalized on Ohio Northern’s mistakes by scoring 27 points off of their 20 turnovers. 

Of the starters, Davis led in points at 13 and went three for four behind the three point line. Brooks was close behind at 12 points while going five for nine in the field. 

One player who did not see minutes was first-year forward Augusto Cassia He is out indefinitely with a muscle strain in his right leg. His status will be updated in the coming weeks

Bench success 

There were a few key players off the bench that provided a spark for the offense. First-year guard Finley Bizjack was one of them. In his first collegiate game, the guard scored 10 points. 

As one of only three returning players on the team, sophomore Connor Turnbull has grown into a leader in the locker room. He scored nine off the bench and had two huge plays that resulted in points and got him to the line. Turnbull had a season-high of six points last season, so he is certainly someone to watch for improvement. 

“I told [the team] before the game that you can’t really explain the magic [in Hinkle],” Turnbull said. “…. I told them to be ready. The fans will show out, even though it’s just an exhibition game.” 

Butler will prepare to face off against Franklin College on Wednesday, Nov. 1 at Hinkle. Tip off for the team’s second and final exhibition game is set for 7 p.m. 


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