INDIANAPOLIS – Butler improved to 2-0 in the Butler Classic and 11-2 overall on Friday night after defeating the UT Martin Skyhawks 3-0 (25-18, 25-15, 25-17). The classic will resume tomorrow with Toledo playing Green Bay at 11 a.m., Green Bay playing UT Martin at 3 p.m. and Butler hosting Toledo in the nightcap at 7 p.m.
Belle Obert and Erica Stahl led Butler to victory on Friday night as each player hit over .500 against UT Martin. Obert led the team with 13 kills and didn't commit a single error on her way to recording a .565 attack percentage. Stahl was also huge in the match with seven kills and a .667 attack percentage.
Morgan Peterson set up the offense with a team-high 20 assists and Brooke Ruffolo once again picked up the team defensively with 12 digs. Head Coach Sharon Clark mixed up the lineup at times against the Skyhawks as 12 different players saw playing time in the victory.
UT Martin scored the first point of the opening set off a kill from Julia Devinney, but Butler would respond by scoring six-straight to take a commanding lead. The Bulldog advantage shrunk to one point at 11-10, but two 4-0 runs down the stretch gave Butler the 25-18 win.
A 3-0 start from Butler quickly turned into a 12-4 lead before UT Martin stopped the momentum with a timeout in set two. The strategy didn't slow Butler down as they extended the lead to 19-6 before the Skyhawks used their final timeout of the set. UT Martin made a late run with Butler sitting on set point, but Obert would come in for the game-winner off an assist from Natalie Wichern.
The third set was close to the midway point as Butler held on to a slim 12-10 lead before going on a 5-2 run that pushed the score to 17-12. A total team effort took Butler to the finish line as Maggie Harbison, Stephanie Kranda, Obert and Stahl all scored to give the team a 25-17 win.