Indianapolis, Ind. - Porshia Allen, Dana Daprile and Jessica Wolfe each notched double-doubles and the Bulldogs held off several late-set charges en route to 25-23, 20-25, 25-20, 25-18 victory over league-leading Milwaukee on Saturday (Oct. 25) afternoon at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
Butler improves to 17-6 overall and 7-4 in league play while moving to within a game of the Panthers, who fall to 15-8 on the year and 8-3 in conference.
The Bulldogs set season-highs for a four-set match with 57 kills, 55 assists and 85 digs while hitting a steady .178 (57-26-174) to Milwaukee's .146 (52-26-178).
Looking like a team on a mission, Butler opened up the first set on a tear, running ahead to a 10-4 lead thanks in part to a pair of kills from Wolfe and additional points from Daprile and Maureen Bamiro. Milwaukee would rebound quickly, however, using a 7-0 run to put itself ahead 11-10.
The two squads would trade points for nearly the entire remainder of the set, including 12 ties, before the Bulldogs took a two-point edge at 24-22 on a handling error and service error by the Panthers. A Milwaukee kill cut the advantage to one, but the ensuing UWM attack would sail wide to give the Bulldogs a narrow 25-23 decision and a 1-0 lead in the match.
Butler again came out swinging at the start of the second period, as two kills from Allen, Bamiro and Wolfe helped the Bulldogs out to a 17-11 lead late in the set. Milwaukee would respond, however, chipping away at the deficit before bringing the bout to within one at 19-18 before taking advantage of several Bulldog miscues to close the set on a 6-0 run for the win.
The Bulldogs got their offense back on track following the break, as Butler hit a match-high .333 (18-3-45) in the set while holding off another late charge by the Panthers to take a 2-1 lead in the bout. Butler opened up a 17-12 lead late in the period before UWM crawled back to within one at 20-19. A pair of kills by Jalesa Lee, however, would help push the Bulldogs back ahead by four at 23-19 before back-to-back points by Kelsey Labrum nailed down the deciding marks.
As they had done in the opening set, the Bulldogs again found themselves with an early advantage in the opening stages of the fourth set, running out to an 8-2 lead at the start. And, in similar fashion, the Panthers worked their way back into the bout before bringing the set even at 15-15.
It would be as close as they would get, however, as a kill by Allen put Butler back on top for good at 16-15 before the Bulldogs rode a 10-3 run to close out the set and the match.
Wolfe led the way for the Bulldogs with 16 kills and added 15 digs for her ninth double-double of the year, while Allen posted her team-best 10th double-double of the season with 13 kills and 10 digs. Dana Daprile dished a match-best 49 assists and chipped in 14 digs for a double-double of her own, and Katie Daprile tied her season-best mark with a match-high 31 digs.
With her second assist of the match, Dana Daprile also became just the fifth player in Butler history to record 3,000 assists in her career.
Butler returns to action on Friday (Oct. 31) when it opens up a four-match road swing with a match at Cleveland State beginning at 7:00 p.m.