Bluffton 63, Hanover 52
Beavers snap six-game skid with 63-52 win over Hanover on Senior Day
By: Brandy Bidlack, sports information assistant
February 16, 2008
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University men's basketball team snapped a six-game losing streak with a 63-52 win over Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference rival Hanover College on Saturday, February 16, 2008. Bluffton improved to 12-11 overall on Senior Day, and 6-8 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play with two games left. The Panthers fell to 11-12 overall with a 7-7 mark in the HCAC.
Nate Overmyer (Payne/Wayne Trace) ignited the Bluffton offense with a three-point basket just 11 seconds into the game. After five straight Hanover points, Overmyer made a free throw and Justin Rufenacht (Wauseon/Pettisville) got to the hoop for a layup. At the 11:47 mark of the first half, sophomore Jordan Pothast (Ottawa/Ottawa-Glandorf) knotted the score at eight with his chip shot following a nice feed from Aaron Taylor (Antwerp/Antwerp).
Senior P.J. Juenger (Loveland/Archbishop) sank a trey to give Bluffton the lead, 11-10. Overmyer hit a jumper, thanks to an assist from Zack Kraus (Findlay/Findlay). Overmyer then added two more points for the Beavers, and Nick Wilson (Continental/Continental), one of six Beavers who hit from distance, made a triple with six minutes remaining in the first half.
At the 4:35 mark, Josh Eichar (North Baltimore/North Baltimore) pulled down an offensive board and made the putback to give Bluffton a 23-16 advantage. Colt Cunningham (Powell/Worthington Christian) and Overmyer both hit from long range to end the first half with the Beavers on top by a score of 30-21.
Senior Nate Overmyer once again sparked the Beavers' offense, scoring the first nine points of the second half for Bluffton. Cunningham knocked down a jumper for Bluffton to make the score 41-37 in favor of the home team with 12:44 left in the game.
A triple from Pothast and a trey by Aaron Taylor upped the lead to ten points, 47-37. Juenger hit a jumper, but Hanover went on a 10-4 run with the only four Bluffton points coming from Kraus as Hanover trimmed the deficit to two points, 51-49, at the 4:31 mark.
Hanover managed only three points during the final 4:31 while Colt Cunningham went 6-for-6 at the charity stripe and Josh Eichar hit a pair of freebies to give Bluffton the 63-52 win over HCAC rival Hanover.
Nate Overmyer led the Beavers with a career-high 25 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the field. He finished with three rebounds, three assists, and one steal in his final Founders contest. Colt Cunningham was the only other Beaver with more than five points, dropping in 11 points and three boards. P.J. Juenger, Josh Eichar, and Jordan Pothast added five points each for Bluffton, while Juengar ripped down four rebounds. Zack Kraus dished out three assists and picked up two steals.
The Panthers were led by Brock Dawson who tallied 17 points, four assists and four rebounds. Robby Brown added eight points for Hanover, along with one block and a game-high 12 boards.
Bluffton hit 21-of-46 (45.7 percent) shots from the field while Hanover went 22-of-52 (42.3 percent). The Beavers sank eight triples, two more than the Panthers. Bluffton hit 13-of-16 (81.3 percent) from behind the charity stripe, compared to only 2-of-4 (50 percent) for Hanover. The Panthers coughed up six more turnovers than the Beavers, 17-11.
The Bluffton University men's basketball team will return to action when the Beavers travel to face HCAC rival Mt. St. Joseph on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2008. Tip time is slated for 7:30 p.m.