MILWAUKEE - Freshman Claire Freeman hit a jumper with 0.6 seconds to go to help the Butler women's basketball team to a 71-70 win at Milwaukee Saturday afternoon. The two teams traded three field goals in the final 14 seconds, the final being Freeman's game-winner.
Butler (13-7, 6-3 HL) trailed 68-66 when Brittany Bowen hit a 3-pointer from the left wing with 14.5 seconds to go to lift BU to a 69-68 lead. Milwaukee's Danielle Jorgenson answered with a baseline jumper with eight seconds to go to put UWM up one.
Following the shot, Butler quickly brought the ball down and junior Terra Burns found Freeman, who hit an 18-footer from the top of the key. The Bulldogs broke up UWM's final desperation baseball pass as time expired.
With the win, Butler stays one game out of first place in the Horizon League standings. Green Bay and Detroit are each 7-2 in league play.
Senior Melanie Thornton led Butler with 14 points before fouling out late in the game. She shot 7-for-8 from the floor. Bowen and Freeman each scored 10 and junior Alyssa Pittman had nine.
Butler controlled the game until UWM's McClain made a 3-pointer to give the Panthers a 46-44 lead at the 12:19 mark. A Stephanie Schell lay-up gave UWM a 57-53 lead, and the Panthers would take a 62-53 lead on another 3 ball by McClain.
Pittman nearly single-handedly erased Milwaukee's lead, burying three 3-pointers over a 2:12 span. Butler led 66-64 until Laur hit a jumper with a minute to go and McClain made a pair of free throws to give UWM a 68-66 lead.
The Panthers (9-11, 4-5 HL) and Bulldogs traded baskets for the first 10 minutes before Butler took control. BU played aggressively throughout, and ripped off a 14-4 run to take a 23-16 lead and force a UWM timeout with 7:46 remaining. The run was capped by Pittman's no-look pass to Susan Lester for a lay-up in transition. A pair of free throws by Anne Breland brought UWM to within 33-29 with 20 seconds left before halftime but Hamilton scored a put-back just before the buzzer to give BU a 35-29 halftime lead.
McClain led Milwaukee with 20 points and six assists, while Jorgenson and Sami Tucker each had 13.
Butler has just one game next week, traveling to Valparaiso Saturday, Feb. 6.
NOTES: The Bulldogs have won four of their last five at Milwaukee...Butler shot 50 percent from the floor (30-for-60), the fifth time this season BU has made half its shots. Butler is 5-0 in those games...Butler had a 33-27 rebounding edge...Chloe Hamilton tied game-high honors with seven boards, including a game-high four offensive rebounds...The Bulldogs shot 5-for-6 and hit three 3-pointers in the final 3:43 of the game...BU had 19 assists, tied for the second-highest mark of the season. Butler had 21 assists against Evansville.