INDIANAPOLIS - Sophomore Sarah Hamm had 30 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks and the Butler women's basketball team had its best offensive outing of the season in a 76-63 win over Milwaukee Saturday afternoon.
"Our kids showed a lot of character," head coach Beth Couture said. "After a tough loss Thursday, I thought our effort was good. Obviously, Sarah Hamm was really good. She's been good since Christmas."
Hamm finished her best game as a Bulldog with 11-for-19 shooting. She made two 3-pointers and all six of her foul shots. Hamm set the tone offensively in the first half with 18 points and then pulled in eight rebounds and blocked four shots in the second half.
"We have a lot of creators on our team. What really helped me were our playmakers, who really make things happen," Hamm said.
On a season in which no Butler player had a double-double after 19 games, both Hamm and junior Becca Bornhorst accomplished that against the Panthers. Bornhorst finished with 10 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists. Sophomore Jenna Cobb chipped in a career-high 16 points.
"Sarah and Becca stepped up their rebounding," Couture said. "The points are always good, but what we really needed were the rebounds."
Two days after shooting 18 percent in a loss to Green Bay, the Bulldogs were at their best offensively in the first half on Saturday. BU shot .533 and built a 44-37 lead. Butler made eight of its first nine field goal attempts after making eight baskets all night on Thursday. The Dawgs led by as many as 13 late in the first half.
As BU appeared to take command, Milwaukee made some shots down the stretch to hang around. UWM cut the lead down to 59-58 at the 7:04 mark to force a Butler timeout. Hamm scored on the next two possessions to put Butler up 63-58. With BU leading 67-60, Hamm had a steal on a loose ball that led to a Cobb lay-up to put Butler ahead 69-60. Butler then iced the game by handling UWM's press and making foul shots.
Milwaukee's Courtney Lindfors scored 19 ppints and blocked four shots. Ashley Green added 13 points for the Panthers (6-13, 2-7).
Butler (8-12, 4-5) will play at Cleveland State and Youngstown State next weekend. BU visits CSU Thursday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m.