Twitter - @ButlerWBB
INDIANAPOLIS – Butler will face Villanova on Wednesday, Feb. 12 at The Pavilion. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014 / 7:00 PM
Location: Villanova, Pa. / The Pavilion (6,500)
Live Stats: Villanova.com
Series History: Villanova leads the all-time series 1-0
Last Meeting: Villanova defeated Butler 70-48 on Jan. 8
Scouting Villanova (18-5, 8-4 BIG EAST)
Ball movement, 3-point shooting and great team defense has Villanova entering the weekend with an overall record of 18-5. The Wildcats only had one non-conference loss early in the season (63-60 vs. Saint Joseph's), but they hit a rough patch during mid-January in BIG EAST action dropping three of four contests (Seton Hall, at DePaul, St. John's). Winners of five straight, the Wildcats are back on track and have now moved to third in the conference standings.
Villanova won't lean on any one player to carry the scoring load. Devon Kane and Preseason All-BIG EAST selection Caroline Coyer are the only two players averaging a double figure scoring total. Kane leads the club at 11.8 points per game and Coyer primarily comes off the bench to net her 11 ppg. What makes the Wildcats unique is that they have four players averaging nine to six ppg and four players averaging two or more.
A team with this type of depth can throw multiple looks at an opponent. 10 players on the roster have appeared in at least 21 games. Frequent substitution patterns allows for the Wildcats to turn up the defensive pressure. The strategy has worked as the 'Cats hold the opposition to just 36 percent shooting on the season.
The meeting between Butler and Villanova earlier this season was the first-ever game played between the two programs. The Bulldogs held a two point lead over Villanova at halftime, but that advantage wouldn't last as the Wildcats dominated the second half to earn 70-48 victory. Butler shot 52 percent in the first half to grab the lead, but they were limited to just four field goals in the final 20 minutes of action which ultimately led to the loss.
With Daress McClung on the sideline in the first meeting, Butler only had one player reach a double figure scoring total as Haley Howard poured in a team-high 17 points and six rebounds. Liz Stratman scored nine points and Taylor Schippers was active with seven.
Villanova posted 20 assists to just four turnovers in the first game. They attacked from the outside by hitting 11 3-point field goals. 31 of the team's 54 shots came from behind the 3-point line.
Last Time Out
Butler outscored Marquette 43-33 in the second half to record their sixth BIG EAST win of the year. A total team effort pushed Butler's overall record to 11-12 this season as they move to .500 in the conference with a 74-70 win over Marquette at the Al McGuire Center.
The Bulldogs shot 52 percent from the floor in the second half to record the win after trailing the Golden Eagles 37-31 at the half. Taylor Schippers and Lexus Murry chipped away at the halftime deficit and senior Daress McClung came up clutch down the stretch as guard/forward scored a game-high 22 points.
McClung hit a huge 3-point field goal with 2:13 to play that gave Butler a one point lead at 67-66. The Bulldogs would never trail from that point forward as McClung and Schippers hit free throws down the stretch to earn the win.
McClung shot 7-for-15 from the field and was 3-of-5 from 3-point range. She added four rebounds, two assists and a steal in 29 minutes of playing time.
Butler had six players' record four rebounds, but the Golden Eagles dominated the category with 48 boards, 12 of which were offensive. Those extra possessions allowed Marquette to outscore Butler 15-2 in second chance points, but the Bulldogs countered by only committing nine turnovers.
BU used a balanced scoring attack that showcased four players with a double figure scoring total. Joining McClung in double digits was Taylor Schippers with 12, Lexus Murry with 11 and Liz Stratman with 10.
- Butler moved to .500 in the BIG EAST with their fourth conference road win
- Six different players recorded four rebounds at Marquette
- The Bulldogs out-scored Marquette 43-33 in the second half by shooting 52%
- Butler once again avoided double digit turnovers by posting just nine at Marquette
- Daress McClung scored a game-high 22 points on 7-of-15 shooting
- Schippers and McDivitt are the only two players in start in all 23 games this year
- Liz Stratman leads the BIG EAST with 55 blocked shots (2.6 per game)
- Stratman moved to seventh all-time at Butler for most blocked shots in a season (55)
- The Bulldogs have used eight different starting lineups this year
- Mandy McDivitt ranks 5th all-time at Butler with 158 career 3-point field goals
#1 Taylor Schippers, 5-8 Guard, Junior from Houston, Texas
#3 Haley Howard, 5-11 Forward, Redshirt Sophomore from Whiteland, Indiana
#5 Liz Stratman, 6-2 Center, Junior from New Palestine, Indiana
#10 Mandy McDivitt, 5-8 Guard, Senior from Connersville, Indiana
#23 Lexus Murry, 5-7 Guard, Sophomore from Indianapolis, Indiana
BIG EAST Preseason Poll
1) DePaul (8) - 79 Points
2) Creighton (2) - 67 Points
3) St. John's - 62 Points
4) Villanova - 56 Points
5) Marquette - 55 Points
6) Georgetown - 36 Points
7) Butler - 31 Points
8) Providence - 25 Points
9) Xavier - 20 Points
10) Seton Hall - 19 Points
Preseason All-BIG EAST Team
Daress McClung, Butler, G/F, Sr., 6-0, Indianapolis, Ind.
Marissa Janning, Creighton, G, So., 5-8, Watertown, Minn.
Sarah Nelson, Creighton, F, Sr., 6-0, Omaha, Neb.
Jasmine Penny, DePaul, F, Sr., 6-1, Logansport, Ind.
Andrea White, Georgetown, F, 6-0, Sr., Lancaster, Va.
Katherine Plouffe, Marquette, F, Sr., 6-3, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Tori Rule, Providence, Jr., G, 5-7, Minneapolis, Minn.
Aliyyah Handford, St. John's, G, So., 5-9, Newark, N.J.
Ka-Deidre Simmons, Seton Hall, G, R-Jr., 5-8, Newark, N.J.
Caroline Coyer, Villanova, G, So., 5-10, Oak Hill, Va.
Playing away from Hinkle Fieldhouse has not been a problem for this 2013-14 Butler women's basketball team. The Bulldogs are 4-2 on the road during conference games and they won two games at the 2013 Las Vegas Thanksgiving Shootout on a neutral court in November.
Couture in Conference
Since taking over the women's basketball program, (2002-03) Head Coach Beth Couture has only had one losing record during conference play. The Bulldogs went 6-23 overall during the 2002-03 season, posting a conference record of 3-13. From that point forward, Couture has finished above .500 on eight occasions and at .500 two times.
3 Years... 3 Conferences
The Butler Bulldogs were part of the Horizon League for 11 years before making the switch to the Atlantic 10 in 2012-13. The conference change to the A-10 was only the beginning as Butler joined the BIG EAST conference at the start of the 2013-14 season.
Stratman's National Rankings
Liz Stratman leads the BIG EAST Conference and ranks 25th nationally in blocked shots per game (2.6). The junior center is currently second in the conference and 47th in the nation with a 52.9 field goal percentage.
Butler hit a season-high 16 3-point field goals at Georgetown. The offensive explosion started in the first half when Mandy McDivitt hit five of her season-high six 3-pointers in the opening 20 minutes. Blaire Langlois followed up with five triples while Taylor Schippers and Ashton Feldhaus each added two. Haley Howard was the fifth player to record a three vs. the Hoyas as Butler finished the game 16-for-35 (45%).
BIG EAST Rankings
Taylor Schippers, Daress McClung and Mandy McDivitt join Stratman as Bulldogs who rank in the top ten of BIG EAST statistical categories. Schippers ranks second with an 82.0 free throw percentage. McClung is fourth in blocked shots per game (1.1), and ninth in both points per game (15.3) and field goal percentage (46.0). McDivitt is seventh in 3-point field goals per game (1.96) and third in minutes played (34.3).
Butler has made two or more 3-point field goals in every game this season. The group averages six made 3-point field goals per game and their season-low total of two 3-pointers came in the 23 point blowout win over Eastern Washington.
McDivitt for 3!
Senior Mandy McDivitt has moved into fifth place all-time in the Butler women's basketball record book with 158 career 3-point field goals. McDivitt recorded 25 3-point field goals as a freshman, 47 as a sophomore, and 41 as a junior. She most recently hit one 3-point field goal at Marquette moving her current season 3-point total to 45.
Butler will host Georgetown on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 2 p.m. The game will raise awareness for breast cancer with two dollars from every adult ticket sold benefiting the 2014 St. Vincent Cancer Walk.