DAYTON, Ohio - The Butler women's basketball team came from behind to win for the third straight game, outlasting Wright State, 51-48, in overtime Saturday afternoon. BU (18-7, 11-3 HL) has now won six straight games and nine of its last 10.
Neither team could find an offensive rhythm the entire game. Butler, ranked nationally in field goal percentage, shot .268 (11-for-41) from the floor and committed a season-high 27 turnovers. Wright State had 32 turnovers and shot .353 (18-for-51).
Senior Susan Lester scored 11 points and junior Terra Burns scored 10 points with nine rebounds and four assists to lead the Bulldogs. Butler is now 11-3 in Horizon League play and maintains pace with Detroit (12-3) and Green Bay (11-3) in the league standings.
The Raiders led virtually the entire game and the Bulldogs needed a series of stops and big plays to get back into the game. Down 37-34 with 3:28 left, the Bulldogs pulled to within one on a driving lay-up by junior Brittany Bowen. Junior Alyssa Pittman made a free throw to tie the game with 1:41 to play.
On the next possession, after a scramble for the ball, Butler deflected the ball out of bounds as the shot clock expired. The officials gave WSU one second on the shot clock and Wright State's Molly Fox made a 3-pointer to put the Raiders up 40-37.
Trailing 40-38 late in regulation, BU went to its leading scorer, Melanie Thornton. Lester found Thornton inside for a lay-up with 15 seconds to go to tie the game. WSU (9-16, 5-10 HL) had the final possession, but LaShawna Thomas' runner rimmed out as regulation expired.
Butler outscored Wright State, 11-8, in the overtime period. The Bulldogs made seven free throws to take control. Leading 49-48 in the final minute, the Bulldogs went inside again to Thornton again to go up three. Wright State missed a 3 at the buzzer and Butler escaped with the victory.
Kanisha Ward led Wright State with 13 points, nine rebounds and 12 turnovers. Butler shot 27-for-43 at the free throw line and Wright State was 8-for-10.
The first half couldn't have gone worse for the Bulldogs. BU shot just 3-for-15 in the first 20 minutes and trailed 22-15 at the half. The Bulldogs committed 13 turnovers in the first 12:13 of the game and had 18 at halftime. Butler averages just 15.5 turnovers per game.
Butler hosts Milwaukee Thursday, Feb. 25 at Hinkle Fieldhouse at 7 p.m.