Butler women’s basketball defeats Austin Peay 75-54 in season opener

Whitney Jennings dribbles the ball up the court against Austin Peay. Photo courtesy of Jimmy Lafakis. 

CHRIS BROWN | STAFF REPORTER | cbbrown@butler.edu

The Butler women’s basketball team opened their season with a 75-54 win over Austin Peay State University on Nov. 11 at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

The Governors held the Bulldogs close early on, trailing by only 4 points at the end of the first quarter. Butler then began to pull away, and outscored Austin Peay 58-41 in the final three quarters.

In her first start for the Bulldogs, redshirt junior guard Whitney Jennings led the way with a game-high 30 points. Jennings scored 17 points in the first half, 13 in the second half, and knocked down all four of the team’s three-pointers.

After transferring from Iowa University and sitting out a year, Jennings said she was happy to get back on the court again.

“I was super excited to get going and I was super anxious to be able to play for the first time in a year and a half,” Jennings said. “I had so much fun out there.”

Head coach Kurt Godlevske said Jennings contributed in more ways than one.

“I’m glad I get to coach her,” Godlevske said with a smile on his face. “She’s dynamic. She can score at all three levels. She’s a great passer. She’s active defensively and she just makes everything easy for us so I’m glad she’s with us.”

In addition to her 30 points, Jennings also led the team with four assists.

Junior forward Tori Schickel and junior guard Michelle Weaver were also key contributors, scoring 14 and 11 points, respectively. Weaver also tallied four rebounds and two assists, while Schickel had team highs in rebounds (six) and steals (five).

Schickel said that picking up their first victory was “a sigh of relief for all of us.”

“We’re going in the right direction,” Schickel said. “We saw a lot of good things tonight. Defensively, we were active. And then offensively, we just have to move a little more. There are things to work on. But overall it’s a great win and it’s a great feeling.”

For Godlevske, the aspect of the game that stood out the most was his team’s defense.

“I think the takeaway is that we only gave up 54 points,” Godlevske said. “And we had a real long stretch in the second quarter where we were really active in our zone and got after it defensively.”

The Bulldogs travel to Murray State University for their second game on Nov. 15 before returning to Hinkle on Nov. 17 against Lipscomb University.

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