2015-16 Men's Basketball
Rose-Hulman 79, Bluffton 77
January 30, 2016
By: Ryan Schadewald, sports information assistant
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - The Bluffton University men’s basketball team fought back from a deficit that reached as many as 26 points early in the final stanza, but could not get over the hump as they fell to the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology Fightin’ Engineers, 79-77, on Saturday, Jan. 30. The Engineers improved to 11-8 overall and 8-4 in conference play, while the Beavers slipped to 9-10 and 4-8 in the HCAC following their seventh loss in the last eight games.
The first six minutes was an even battle as an Austin Terrill (Richwood/North Union) long ball tied the game at 9-9. But the Engineers would score seven straight for a 16-9 advantage before Bluffton got another triple, this time from Josh Carey (Bellefontaine). The Engineers broke the game open after Carey dialed long distance, scoring 13 straight counters over the next five minutes to take a 29-12 lead at the 7:18 mark. A jumper from Billy Taflinger (Lima/Central Catholic) late in the half made it 39-21 before Rose-Hulman scored the last four markers for a commanding 43-21 halftime lead.
The Engineers scored the first four points of the second, giving them their largest lead of the game at 47-21. A slam by Austin Rohde (Shelby) gave the Beavers a jolt, especially big man Thayne Recker (Arlington) who was held scoreless in the opening half. Recker would score seven straight points to cap off the 9-0 spurt which made the score 47-30 with 15:05 left. The deficit was still 17 points when a Rohde three-ball and a Recker layup got it to 58-46. After the Engineers split a pair of freebies, Rohde hit another triple to pull Bluffton within 10 (59-49) at the 8:36 mark.
Recker would go 2-for-4 from the line in the next two minutes before another jumper from Rohde and Billy Taflinger's (Lima/Central Catholic) free throws made it 59-55 with 6:09 left. Rose got a key jumper from Charlie Aimone before Trey Elchert (Jackson Center) hit a big corner three to make it a 61-58 game with 5:24 to go. Dillon Reynolds knocked down a jumper on the other end to make it 63-58 but Recker would pocket four straight counters to get within a single point (63-62) with 3:54 remaining.
The Engineers were again on the verge of sealing it with eight consecutive points, including five straight from Tyler Duffy and it was suddenly 71-62. Terrill would hit his second three of the game before Recker converted two freebies to fight it back to 71-67. Miller hit a jumper for a 73-67 spread before Rohde made it three on a hoop and harm with 41 ticks on the clock. Taflinger hit a jumper with eight seconds left to make it two points once again. Tyler Duffy's freebies got it back to four, making Jared Wentling (Carey) and his buzzer beater a futile attempt as the Bluffton comeback attempt fell just short.
It was truly a tale of two halves for the Beavers, as they shot just 8-of-23 (34.8 percent) in the first, followed by a much improved 17-of-28 (60.7 percent) in the final stanza to make their total a respectable 49 percent (25-of-51). The Beavers also hit 47.1 percent (8-of-17) from deep and 82.7 percent (19-of-23) from the charity stripe, only two of those coming in the first half. The Engineers made 48.3 percent (28-of-58) from the floor and 35.7 percent (5-of-14) from beyond the arc. The other story was the turnover battle, as Bluffton finished with 18 on the contest, but only one of them coming in the final period. The Engineers committed 11. The Beavers also outrebounded the Rose-Hulman, 33-27, for the game.
The visitors were led by Austin Rohde and his 22 points, 18 of those coming in the second half. Rohde also grabbed five boards. Thayne Recker scored 19, all coming in the second, and he ripped down 10 rebounds. Billy Taflinger finished with 13 markers and seven dimes, while Jared Wentling had 10 points, six boards and four steals for the Beavers. Recker's 19 points moved him into a tie for 6th on the all time list (Lynn Martin) with 1,513 career tallies. With 11 makes at the stripe, Recker is now the all-time leader with 429 career free throws made, surpassing Mark Froning's school record of 424.
Rose-Hulman placed five scorers in double figures, led by 20 points and six rebounds for Tyler Duffy. Dillon Reynolds, Jimmy Miller and Charlie Aimone chipped in 13 apiece in the victory for the Engineers.
Bluffton will return home on Wednesday, Feb. 3 as the Beavers take on the Manchester University Spartans in the Sommer Center. Tip time is set for 7:30 p.m. Come support your Beavers!