Second-half surge sends Butler past Southwestern JV, 88-53

Second-half surge sends Butler past Southwestern JV, 88-53

The Butler women used a big second half to pull away from Southwestern JV for an 88-53 win that marked the end of the non-conference portion of the Grizzlies' schedule.

Butler scored the first seven points of the game, but Southwestern battled back and eventually tied the game 21-21. Butler regained the lead with a pair of free throws by Ashlyn McBride with 4:35 to play in the half. Butler got a 3-pointer from Katie Palmer just before the half to give the Grizzlies a 35-27 lead at the break.

Southwestern was still within seven at 39-32 before Brayden Byrd scored on a layup and was fouled. Her free throw put Butler up by double digits with 16:25 to play in the game. When Katie Palmer hit a 3-pointer with 14:56 to play, it gave Butler its biggest lead of the game to that point at 45-32.

That was the start a 33-6 run for the Butler women, who led by 34 points after a Nia Roberts layup made it 72-38 with 5:49 to go. Millie Shade's basket at the final buzzer pushed the final margin to 35 points.

Butler got balanced scoring in the win. Elayna Spilker led with 14 points off the bench, while Katie Palmer had 13 points. Sarah Parker added 11 and Ashley Gibson and Brayden Byrd scored 10 apiece. Every Butler player in the lineup scored at least two points in the win.

The Grizzlies made 35-of-70 shots (50 percent), while Southwestern shot just 15-of-63 (24 percent). Butler outrebounded Southwestern 47-29. The Grizzlies also blocked five shots and had 24 assists, which is tied for the second-highest total in a game this season.

The Grizzlies are now 10-3 on the season and will be idle for more than a month, with the next game not scheduled until Butler faces Garden City at home on Jan. 3 to begin Jayhawk West Conference play.