girls on fire in 4th
Butler outscores Lakers 22-9 in final period to take tourney
BUTLER TWP Freeze that fourth quarter.
It's exactly where Butler girls basketball coach Dorothea Epps wants her team to be.
The Golden Tornado outscored Mercyhurst Prep 22-9 over the final eight minutes Saturday night to defeat the Lakers 63-51 and win the Butler Girls Tip-Off Tournament.
"I'm hoping that's not the best we can play, but it's by far our best quarter of basketball so far,"Epps said.
Mercyhurst Prep returns two starters from last year's team, which reached the Class AAA state championship game. The Lakers led by as many as eight points 32-24 late in the first half before Butler used a 7-0 run to close within a point at the intermission.
Senior forward Jenna Manuel came off the Butler bench to sink a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws during the run. She finished with 14 points and five rebounds.
"Jenna and Rachel Doutt gave us great games off the bench,"Epps said. "We needed an offensive spark and Jenna provided that."
The lead changed hands seven times five times in the second half and was last tied at 46 with 6:16 to play.
The Tornado's Olivia Bresnahan converted a three-point play to break the deadlock and key an 11-0 run that decided the contest. Katresa Savisky added two free throws, Manuel drained another trey and Savisky completed a three-point play.
"They hit a couple of 3s and took off on us,"Mercyhurst coach Dan Perfetto said. "They grabbed the momentum and we never got it back."
Butler sank all eight of its free throws during that final quarter and hit six of 11 shots from the floor, including treys by Manuel and Casie Cygan.
The Tornado sank just 16 of 43 shots in the first three quarters.
"I was concerned about this game after Friday night (a 65-8 win over Northgate),"Epps said. "We didn't get anything out of that game, really, and this was going to be a tough one.
"This reminds me a lot of where our team was at last year. I wasn't sure what we had then and I'm not sure what we have now. I wanted to see how our girls would respond if we fell behind, and they answered that question tonight."
Butler suffered only nine turnovers Saturday while Mercyhurst had 18. The Tornado had a 29-28 edge in rebounds.
Bresnahan had 20 points and six rebounds for Butler. Amanda Dymun had 12 points and five boards while Savisky contributed 10 points and five rebounds.
Senior forward Kirsten Olowinski paced Mercyhurst with 19 points and seven rebounds. She scored her 1,000th career point in the game and is headed to Miami of Ohio.
Hopewell defeated Northgate 73-35 in the consolation game as Paige Alvaina scored 19 points and Elise Farris had 17 points, nine assists and seven steals.
MERCYHURST PREP 51
Kayla Wilwohl 1-1 0-0 2, Amanda Berchtold 6-11 0-0 12, Kelly Hedderick 0-1 2-2 2, Courey Schaetzle 2-4 0-0 4, Florioe Fournier 0-0 0-0 0, Lindsay Stamp 1-8 2-2 4, Autumn Anderson 2-3 2-3 6, Kristen Olowinski 8-15 2-2 19, Bonita Booker 1-2 0-0 2. Totals: 21-45 8-9 51
Casey Fleeger 1-2 0-0 2, Katresa Savisky 2-4 6-7 10, Olivia Bresnahan 6-20 8-11 20, Amanda Dymun 6-11 0-0 12, Casie Cygan 1-6 0-0 3, Rachel Doutt 1-2 0-0 2, Jenna Manuel 5-9 2-2 14, Ali Sedwick 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 22-54 16-20 63
Mercyhurst Prep 16 16 10 951
Butler 12 19 10 2263
3-point goals: Olowinski; Cygan, Manuel 2