Bluffton pulls off amazing comeback, win in overtime at Franklin

January 17, 2001


Bluffton College senior Chris Sheldon hit a 3-pointer with seven seconds to play in regulation to send the game to overtime, then BC outscored the host Franklin College squad 10-7 in the extra session as the Beavers won their third straight Heartland Conference game, 99-96 in Franklin, Indiana.

Bluffton trailed 46-31 at halftime but shot 60% from the floor in the second half to overcome a 28-point deficit with 11:22 left to play.

It was Bluffton's first ever Heartland Conference victory away from Founders Hall as BC improves to 11-4 overall and 3-2 in the Heartland Conference. Franklin falls to 8-7 overall and 1-3 in the HCAC.

Five BC players scored in double figures, led by senior Ben Coole (Butler/Clear Fork) and junior Rod Overmyer (Payne/Wayne Trace) with 24 points each. All of Overmyer's points came in the final 12 minutes of the game and overtime.

Coole scored 17 of his points in the first half but BC was outrebounded 21-12 and shot just 35.5% from the floor. The beginning of the second half started out much like the first half as the Grizzlies went up by as many as 28 points twice with under 12 minutes to play.

It was all Bluffton College from there, however, as Overmyer scored 21 points in the next 11 minutes in leading BC on a 28-8 run that included buckets from Travis Elsass, Chad Cramer, Marcus Bixler and Sheldon, who hit a layup with 17 seconds to play to pull BC to within two points at 88-86. Franklin connected on a free throw with 12 seconds left to go up by three, but Sheldon drained a trey with seven ticks left to send the game into overtime.

Coole fouled out just eight seconds into overtime, leaving the game with five blocks. A layup by Cramer early in the overtime session gave Bluffton its first lead of the game, followed soon after by three straight free throws by Overmyer after he was fouled on a 3-point attempt. Bixler added a free throw with 2:16 to put BC up by five points, but Franklin tied the game back up with 43 seconds left in overtime at 95-95. Neither team scored another field goal, but Sheldon sank two more free throws with 10 seconds left and Cramer added two more freebies with three seconds to play to give Bluffton a 99-96 victory.

Cramer ended the game with 16 points and a team-high eight rebounds, while Travis Elsass scored 15 points and Sheldon chipped in 11.