INDIANAPOLIS - Senior Chloe Hamilton hit all 11 of her field goal attempts to score 26 points but the Butler women's basketball team couldn't complete a big comeback in a 66-62 loss to #22/16 Green Bay Thursday night. The loss put BU one game behind the Phoenix in the league standings.
Hamilton's big night came on 11-for-11 shooting and 4 for 5 at the free throw line. She also had 10 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season. Senior Brittany Bowen added 17 points - 13 in the second half - for Butler, which overcame a 13-point halftime deficit to be in the game during the final minutes.
Down 33-16 late in the first half, the Bulldogs would trail 44-28 with 13:06 remaining. Butler then used pressure defense and Hamilton's inside attack to go on a 12-0 to cut it to 44-40 with 10:25 left. The Phoenix would go back up 12 late in the game before Butler went on a run to make it interesting in the final minutes.
Butler, pressing after falling behind, forced Green Bay into 25 turnovers. In the end, the 35-22 halftime deficit was just a bit much for the Bulldogs to overcome.
"We were close. There are no moral victories," head coach Beth Couture said. "But if we put to halves together, who knows what would have happened?
"There are some things we can take away from this game. I'll go to battle with our kids any day."
Green Bay (19-1, 8-0) was led by Celeste Hoewisch with 23 points. She shot 6 for 7 and made all eight of her free throws. Julie Wojta added 20 points for the Phoenix, who advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last season. The Phoenix made all 12 of its free throws, including 8-for-8 shooting in the game's final 5:42.
Butler (13-7, 7-1) will need to rebound quickly, as it hosts Milwaukee Saturday, Jan. 29 at 2 p.m.