2013-14 Men's Basketball
Defiance 62, Bluffton 53
By: Adriane Bruner, sports information assistant
January 29, 2014
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University men's basketball team fell behind 20-9 less than six minutes into Wednesday's contest with rival Defiance and that was the difference as the Yellow Jackets held off Bluffton for a 62-53 victory on January 29 in the Sommer Center. The Beavers fell to 6-12 overall and 2-9 in the Heartland Conference, while the Jackets improved to 14-4 and 9-2 in the HCAC.
Bluffton was the first to put some points on the board, getting the ball into senior WILL POPE (Somerville/Preble Shawnee) who hit from in close on his first touch. Defiance turned to their big man, WADE WOOLEY, for an easy tip-in. BROCK HOMIER (Continental) answered, draining a shot from just behind the arc, but the Yellow Jackets immediately responded with a three-point shot of their own which started a train of threes. An outstanding performance by BERNARD EDWARDS, who sandwiched two triples around an easy layin, gave Defiance a commanding 20-9 lead at the 13:40 mark.
With just over a minute left in the half the Yellow Jackets took over again, capitalizing on two jumpers from MASON ROTH and a buzzer-beating shot by KENT TIETJE to put the visitors up 35-19 at the end of the first period.
Again the Beavers were the first to score in the second half, ready to trim the deficit with a jumper from Homier which he followed with a long-distance trifecta. A layup from Bluffton guard RYAN EBBESKOTTE (Fort Jennings/Delphos Jefferson) made the score 37-26 just 2:30 into the second stanza.
The game slowed down substantially with a three-minute dry spell for both teams before Ebbeskotte hit a three-point shot with just over three minutes left to give the Beavers a spark in hopes of a comeback. A minute later AUSTIN ROHDE (Shelby) hit from distance to pull the Beavers within seven. As the clock wound down, Bluffton was forced to foul and Roth went 6-of-6 at the stripe to secure the 62-53 victory.
Leading the Beavers was Will Pope with 13 points on 6-of-10 from the field with five rebounds. Also in the double digits for Bluffton were Ebbeskotte and Homier who contributed 11 points each, both with three long-range shots to their credit. Leading the Yellow Jackets was Roth with 23 points on 7-of-11 from the field to go along with eight rebounds on the night. Edwards also added 14 points in the victory.
The Beavers were 21-of-46 (45.7 percent) from the field tonight, while The Yellow Jackets were slightly better at 22-of-45 (48.9 percent). The home team struggled mightily from the charity stripe as they were 4-of-16 (25.0 percent), while the Jackets were 11-of-13 (84.6 percent). Bluffton was solid from beyond the arc, going 7-of-15 (46.7 percent), while Defiance finished 7-of-18 (38.9 percent). Both teams turned it over 12 times and Defiance came down with three more rebounds, 30-27.
The Beavers hit the court next at Hanover College this weekend. Tip-off is slated for 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb 1.