November 20, 2009

Bulldogs Travel To Saint Louis

2009 Butler Women's Basketball
Butler (1-1) at Saint Louis (1-1)

 

Saturday, November 21, 2009 - 3 p.m. ET
St. Louis, Mo. - Chaifetz Arena 

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Bulldogs Travel To St. Louis

The Butler women's basketball team travels to Saint Louis Saturday, Nov. 21 for a 3 p.m. ET contest at SLU's new Chafeitz Arena. The Bulldogs are coming off a 65-57 win on Wednesday and can go over .500 for the first time this season.

 

The Starting 5 - Butler's Top Storylines

 

1. Dogs Coming Off Historic Season: Butler enters its 35th season of varsity women's basketball with the momentum of a program on the rise. The Bulldogs went 20-12 last season and advanced to the second round of the WNIT. It was Butler's first postseason berth since the 1998 team also went to the WNIT. Additionally, the Bulldogs have won 20 games in each of the last two seasons. The last consecutive 20-win seasons for BU was 1994-95 and 1995-96.

 

2. Coach Couture's Battle: BU head coach Beth Couture successfully battled breast cancer during the offseason. She was diagnosed last April and after 16 weeks of chemotherapy and six weeks of radiation treaments, Couture is back on the sideline for her 8th season at Butler. Couture's last treatment came just before the season opener at Kentucky.

 

3. Bulldogs Have Good Memories At SLU: Butler is returning to the city of St. Louis for the first time since winning SLU's 2004 Thanksgiving tourney. The Bulldogs went 2-0 in that event, but didn't see the host Billikens. After defeating Austin Peay, 69-52, Butler faced upset winner Alabama A&M, who beat SLU. BU defeated the Aggies, 54-44 to win the tournament.

 

4. Lester Passes 1,000 Points...And Quickly: With 16:59 left in the game at Kentucky, Susan Lester knocked down a pair of free throws. The second free throw was her 1,000th career point. The senior forward now has 30 points in the season's first pair of games and 1,024 for her career. She is seven points shy of 17th place in school history.

 

5. Lester, Bowen Grab Preseason HL Honors: Susan Lester and Brittany Bowen were each named preseason All-Horizon League in the league's preseason poll. Lester, who was a preseason second-team pick last year, was named to the first team and Bowen was voted to the second team. Butler was voted 3rd in the poll, following defending champion Green Bay and Cleveland State.

 

Bowen Leading The Way: Brittany Bowen has been Butler's leading scorer in each of the team's first two games. The junior guard went for 16 - all in the opening half - at Kentucky and then had a team-high 17 points against IPFW. Bowen is shooting 13-for-22 from the floor this season and is also averaging 8.0 rebounds per game.

Susan Goes For Double-Double: Susan Lester has shaken off an offseason injury to average 15.0 points and 8.5 rebounds in the season's opening pair of games. She scored 14 points at Kentucky before posting 16 points and 14 rebounds vs. IPFW.

 

That's How You Rebound: After getting beaten by a 46-29 margin on the boards at Kentucky, BU did essentially the same thing to IPFW. The Bulldogs outrebounded the Mastodons, 46-27, while grabbing 18 offensive rebounds. Butler's starting five grabbed 38 rebounds, including 14 offensive boards.

 

Big, Tall Dogs: Although by just a fraction of an inch, this year's Butler team is the tallest squad since Beth Couture arrived on campus in 2002. BU's average height is 5-10 2/3, just a bit taller than the 2007 team.

 

Postseason Victory: The Bulldogs' win over Duquesne in the WNIT was the program's first postseason win since a 95-90 WNIT victory over Bowling Green in 1998.

 

Pittman Brings Instant Offense: Alyssa Pittman, a transfer from Eastern Michigan, could be a key scorer for BU this season. Pittman, the 2007 MAC Freshman of the Year, scored 11 points in her Butler debut at Kentucky. The Elkhart, Ind., native averaged 12.3 points per game in two seasons at EMU. In her first two seasons, she made 152 career 3-pointers, which would be 4th in Butler history.

 

Butler Basketball Goes International: Beth Couture will be taking her team to Cancun, Mexico, for a pair of games during Thanksgiving weekend. The Bulldogs will take on Syracuse and Northern Iowa in the Cancun Thanksgiving Classic Nov. 26-27.

 

Hamilton Playing Well In Post: Chloe Hamilton earned starts in each of the season's games and has responded by averaging 7.0 points and 8.5 rebounds. The Michigan native had seven points, 11 rebounds and four steals vs. IPFW.

 

Better At The FT Line: Butler missed 16 free throws in its exhibition against DePauw, and then made just 11 of 17 freebies vs. Kentucky. The Bulldogs corrected that against IPFW, hitting 17 of 23 tries (.739).

 

Devin Steps Up: Devin Brierly scored eight points, handled full-court pressure and defended well while playing 25 minutes vs. IPFW. Her 3-pointer with 5:25 remaining gave Butler an 8-point lead and the Bulldogs never trailed again.