Bulldogs Shoot For Season Sweep Of Cleveland State

2010-11 Butler Women's Basketball

Butler (15-9, 9-3) at Cleveland State (13-10, 6-6)
Saturday, Feb. 12 - 4 p.m. ET
Wolstein Center - Cleveland, Ohio
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Bulldogs Shooting For Season Sweep Of Cleveland State

The Butler women’s basketball team, now 9-3 in Horizon League play, will take on Cleveland State Saturday, Feb. 12 in Cleveland at 4 p.m. The Bulldogs are coming off a 73-56 win at Youngstown State, while CSU enters after beating Valparaiso. Butler defeated Cleveland State, 73-65, earlier this year at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

The Starting 5 - Butler's Top Storylines

1. Chloe Goes For 34: Chloe Hamilton exploded for a career-high 34 points Thursday night at Youngstown State, the highest single-game scoring output for a Butler player since 2001. Hamilton shot 11 for 16 with 12-for-14 shooting at the free throw line. The performance tied for fifth most in Butler history. The single-game scoring record is 37 points, set by Sarah Bolten in 2001.  

2. Looking For Repeat Performance: Butler is aiming for its second season sweep of Cleveland State in three years. The Bulldogs, who defeated CSU 73-65 last month at Hinkle Fieldhouse, also took the season series from the Vikings in 2009. BU defated CSU twice by nine that season. The Vikings, however, won two of three last year, including the league championship game.

3. Chloe 8th In The Nation: Chloe Hamilton entered this weekend’s play ranked eighth in the country in field goal shooting at .593 (now .599). The 5-10 senior is one of only eight players shooting 59 percent or better. Hamilton posted 17-for-19 shooting against Green Bay and Milwaukee and recently had a stretch with 16 consecutive made field goals. 

4. Players Of The Week: Brittany Bowen and Chloe Hamilton have each been tabbed Horizon League Player of the Week this season. Hamilton garnered the honor on Jan. 24 for her efforts at Loyola and UIC. Hamilton fought off early foul trouble for 16 points in BU’s win at Loyola on Jan. 20, then went for a dominating 27 points at UIC on Jan. 22. Brittany Bowen was selected as player of the week on Jan. 10 after averaging 19.0 points per game in road wins at Wright State and Detroit.

5. BU vs. Ohio: Since 2007, Butler has posted a 24-11 mark against opponents from Ohio. That includes a 5-4 mark against Cleveland State, and a 20-7 record against Horizon League foes from Ohio. With Thursday’s victory, BU improved to 8-0 against Youngstown State during that span.

 

Butler-CSU Series: Butler leads the all-time series with Cleveland State 23-12. The Bulldogs have won two of the last three against CSU, but the Vikings won two of three last season. Beth Couture is 14-6 against the Vikings.

...Last Time vs. CSU: Chloe Hamilton had 17 points and 12 rebounds to lead four Bulldogs in double figures. The game was fairly close throughout, though Butler did lead by 10 with 6:08 remaining. CSU was led by Shalonda Winton with 19 points and 12 rebounds. 

2010 Title Game: No BU-CSU game was more important than the meeting in Green Bay last March. The Bulldogs, the No. 2 seed, dropped a 66-57 decision to No. 4 seed Cleveland State. The Vikings defeated league champ Green Bay in the semifinal to get there.  The Vikings got up big early and led by 10 at the half before holding on.

More On 34: Chloe Hamilton’s 34-point outburst at Youngstown State was one for the ages. Not only was it three short of the school single-game record, but it was the highest output in a league game this season. UWM’s Courtney Lindfors scored 35 in a non-conference game in November. 

Sweet 16: Chloe Hamilton recently finished a stretch of 16 consecutive made shots, a streak that covered three games. She converted her last attempt  on Jan. 22 at UIC, then shot 11 for 11 against Green Bay. Hamilton made her first four shots against Milwaukee before missing. 

Azjah’s Spark: Azjah Bass has provided enough spark off the bench to climb into the starting lineup. The senior point guard started Thursday and had five assists in 27 minutes. Bass played 16 minutes and had a big 3-point play late against Green Bay, then she added four points and three boards against UWM. Bass topped that Thursday with nine points in 21 minutes vs. Detroit. Bass has started six games this season. 

Cobb’s Best Game: Freshman point guard Jenna Cobb had the best game of her young BU career in the first CSU game last month. The Ohio native went for 11 points with three assists and two steals in 25 minutes. It remains her only double-digit scoring outing. 

400: Butler’s win against Milwaukee on Jan. 29 was victory No. 400 for Beth Couture. The 9th-year Bulldog coach owns 143 victories at Butler, the most women’s basketball wins in Butler history. Only 48 other active coaches have 400 career victories.

More On 11 For 11: Chloe Hamilton’s 11-for-11 shooting night was the third time in school history a Bulldog player took eight shots or more and made them all. In addition to Alexis Proffitt’s 13 for 13 (2/6/97), Kelly Kuhn went 8 for 8 against Wright State (2/20/99).

Moving The Ball: Butler registered 20 assists on 24 field goals Thursday night, the fourth game this season with 20+ Bulldog assists. It was the highest assist rate of the season (83.3). The Dawgs assisted on 82 percent of their field goals vs. Wake Forest in November (23 assists on 28 field goals).

Ohio Bulldogs: Butler has two Ohio natives, Becca Bornhorst and Jenna Cobb, on the roster. Bornhorst, a sophomore who has started 12 games this year, played at Dublin-Coffman High School near Columbus. Cobb, from Miami Trace High School, is a freshman point guard. Cobb’s father, Glen, played linebacker for Ohio State in the early 1980s. 

99% Comeback: Butler made two near-comebacks last weekend, only to come up a bit short. BU trailed 46-35 last Thursday vs. Detroit before attacking the Titans full court and cutting the deficit to 53-51. Detroit won 55-51. Wright State made 12 3-pointers to build a 55-40 lead before the Bulldogs came back to tie the game in the final minute. WSU’s Ta-Myra Davis scored with 1.2 seconds left to give the Raiders the win.

Match-up To Watch: A key individual match-up to keep an eye on Saturday will be how the Bulldogs decide to defend CSU standout guard Shawnita Garland. Devin Brierly, BU’s starting 2-guard, will likely draw the assignment most of the time. 

Get Back On The Boards: Butler out-rebounded its first eight league opponents before losing the boards battle in three straight games against Milwaukee, Detroit and Wright State. The Bulldogs got back on the glass at YSU, out-rebounding the Penguins 38-22. Butler allowed just four offensive rebounds to a team that shot 38.9 percent. BU is +4.6 in rebounding margin in Horizon League games, good for third in the conference. The Bulldogs have been +10 or better on the glass seven times this season. 

A 4th Straight 20: Butler needs five more wins to reach 20 victories for the fourth season in a row. That would be a first for BU as a Division I program, and second time in school history. The Bulldogs had four 20-win seasons in a row from 1978-82. This group went 20-10 in 2007-08 and followed that with a 20-12 season in 2008-09. Last year’s mark of 23-10 was the team’s most wins since the 1997-98 Bulldogs went 25-6 under June Olkowski. 

Inching Closer To Postseason: The best team in the Horizon League standings that doesn’t earn the league’s bid to the NCAA Tournament advances to the WNIT. Butler has earned that distinction two years in a row, and it is on pace for another postseason berth. The Bulldogs remain one game ahead of Wright State in the loss column for second in the HL standings.

Chloe Got Into The Game: In Butler’s 66-61 win at UIC on Jan. 29, Butler came out slow and actually trailed at halftime. Beth Couture could be heard on the sideline, encouraging her players to “get in the game.” Chloe Hamilton did just that, scoring 17 of her career-high 27 points in the second half to lead Butler to victory. The 5-10 senior shot 12 for 20 and made three free throws while grabbing six rebounds in 39 minutes. 

Bowen Is Scoring: Brittany Bowen, who is averaging 14.4 points and 7.0 rebounds in Horizon League play, is eighth in the league averaging 15.0 points this season. In addition to scoring 30 against Indiana State on Dec. 4, the 5-10 senior has six outings with 19 points or more this season. She also has posted two 25-point performances prior to this season. She is also statistically one of the most efficient scorers in the league. Bowen ranks third in the Horizon League in free throw percentage (.860), sixth in 3-point percentage (.362) and 10th in field goal shooting (.461).

Bulldogs Nationally: In addition to Chloe Hamilton being eighth in the country in field goal percentage, Brittany Bowen can be found in the most recent NCAA stats. Bowen ranks 29th in the nation in free throw percentage (.857) and 103rd in field goal percentage (.462). Alyssa Pittman stands 96th in the country in free throw shooting (.808). As a team, the Bulldogs are 56th in assists, 45th in free throw shooting, 70th in field goal shooting and 66th in assist-to-turnover ratio. 

Shooting To Remember: Butler’s 88-69 win over Youngstown State was an offensive performance for the ages. The Dawgs shot .615 from the floor (32-for-52), which was the team’s best effort since a .625 shooting night against Wright State in 1998. It was the best single-game shooting performance under head coach Beth Couture. Led by Alyssa Pittman’s six 3-pointers, BU sank 14 of 23 (.609) from beyond the arc. The 14 treys was tied for second and one shy of the school record set in 2007.

1,200 Point Scorers: In Butler’s win over IUPUI in November, Brittany Bowen became the 22nd player in a Butler uniform to score 1,000 career points. The 5-10 senior reached the mark with a lay-up at the 16:05 mark of the first half. Bowen now has 1,283 points as a Bulldog. Additionally, Alyssa Pittman crossed the 1,000-point mark last season. She scored 715 points in her two years at Eastern Michigan and now also has 1,278 for her career.

Conference Wins Record: With six games to play, Butler can still tie the school record for conference wins in a season. BU has set a school record with 14 league victories in each of the past two seasons. The Bulldogs have posted back-to-back 14-4 conference seasons, tied for the 1993 Bulldog team that won 14 MCC games. 

Couture’s Cause: When not patrolling the Butler sideline, Beth Couture has spent her time in the battle against breast cancer. Couture, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in the spring of 2009, rushed through treatments to make it on the sidelines for the start of last season. Couture has been cancer-free for more than a year and has participated in several awareness events. She walked 38 miles over a two-day span for St. Vincent’s Weekend To End Breast Cancer during the fall.

St. Vincent Women Of Hope: Beth Couture is serving as honorary chairwoman for 2011 St. Vincent Woman of Hope, a breast cancer awareness group. Each Woman of Hope participant pledges to raise or give $1,000 annually for the cancer cause of her choice. All funds raised by Woman of Hope benefit cancer programs and services at St.Vincent. A celebration and walk is scheduled for October 1 to honor the participants.

Career Record Watch: As they approach the final weeks of their collegiate careers, Brittany Bowen, Chloe Hamilton and Alyssa Pittman continue to climb Butler’s career record books. Bowen moved into 10th on BU’s all-time scoring list. Her current marks in 3-point percentage (.388, 9th) and free throw shooting (.828, 4th) would land her in the school’s top 10. Additionally, Hamilton is currently fourth all-time in field goal percentage (.552) while Pittman is on the chart for 3-pointers made (105, 9th) and attempted (339, 7th). 

Closing 2010: The Bulldogs finished the 2010 calendar year with a record of 22-12, the most wins in a calendar year since the team won 23 games in 1998. The total of 22 wins is tied for fifth most in school history. The school record for wins in a calendar year is 25, set in 1981. BU went 21-10 in the 2009 calendar year.

Injury Bug: Butler’s 9-3 Horizon League start has been amazing when you consider how hard the Bulldogs were hit by injuries. BU is without two starters, senior point guard Terra Burns (8.5 ppg, 4.8 apg) and freshman center Sarah Hamm (7.0 ppg). Burns was injured at Notre Dame and hasn’t played since, while Hamm suffered an ACL tear in her right knee against Valparaiso and is out for the year. 

Devin Scoring More: Devin Brierly, a career 4.2 scorer, is averaging 9.8 points over the last four games. She scored a career-high 19 points in BU’s win over Milwaukee on Jan. 29 and had 12 against Wright State last week. However, it’s not the scoring column where her value is best measured. Brierly is an athletic, versatile wing who is counted on for perimeter defense and passing. She also takes care of the ball, sporting a team-best 1.32 assist-to-turnover ratio. She is also shooting .830 at the free throw line, second on the team.

Up Next: Butler returns home next weekend to host UIC and Loyola. The Feb. 19 game vs. LUC is Butler’s Senior Day.