January 20, 2013

Butler Tops La Salle 59-42

PHILADELPHIA - Junior Daress McClung stuffed the stat sheet with 19 points, nine rebounds and seven blocks to lead the Butler women's basketball team to a 59-42 win at La Salle on Sunday. The Bulldogs have now won seven of their last nine games.

McCLung finished 7-for-15 shooting and also added five assists and three steals. Sophomore Liz Stratman added 12 points for BU, which picked up its first road win in the Atlantic 10 Conference.

"Everything is new. From the hotel to not knowing where we're at in Philly and coming to a place we've never been," head coach Beth Couture said. "It's almost better. We came ready to play and had a great practice yesterday right when we got off the plane. It's a good A-10 road game for us and we want to continue to get better and try and win some more."

The Bulldogs (11-7, 2-1) changed defenses effectively, forcing turnovers and bad shots with a mix of man, zone and full-court alignments. Individually, junior Mandy McDivitt drew the assignment of La Salle's Brittany Wilson. McDivitt and the Bulldogs hounded LU's leading scorer into a 6-for-19 shooting performance and seven turnovers. She did finish with 17 points.

La Salle shot just 24 percent on the day and had 11 shots blocked by Butler, the A-10 team leader in rejections.

"Our kids were really in tune on defense," Couture said. "I really challenged the kids defensively before the game, and I was proud of the way the kids played in the match-up zone. I wish we could've rebounded better, but it's tough to do in zone."

The Bulldogs' execution on offense resulted in 19 assists on 24 field goals. BU had just 12 turnovers and outscored La Salle by nine in the first half and eight in the second half. The Explorers didn't get closer than 16 in the last 11 minutes of the game. Butler's largest lead was 57-35 at the 3:14 mark.

Butler will continue on the road this week when it plays at Massachusetts Wednesday, Jan. 23 at 7 p.m. ET. The Bulldogs are back at home Sunday, Jan. 27 vs. VCU.