2015-16 Men's Basketball
Bluffton 92, Manchester 71
February 3, 2016
By: Griffin Kuras, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Manchester University Spartans came to town to take on the Beavers for the second time this season. The home squad was able to jump out to a quick lead and battle through a tough stretch in the middle to get the 92-71 win, improving to 10-10 overall with a 5-8 mark in the HCAC. With the loss the Spartans slipped to 10-10 overall, including a 7-6 record in conference. The victory keeps Bluffton's tournament hopes alive with five games to play.
The scoring started quickly for the home squad, bolting out to a 12-2 lead in the first four minutes behind a first possession 3-pointer from senior guard Billy Taflinger (Lima/Central Catholic). The Beavers built a strong lead behind some great team offense and scoring from Austin Rohde (Shelby) and freshman forward Jared Wentling (Carey). The Manchester offense was able to show some life after falling behind 35-21 with 4:30 left in the half. The Spartans trimmed the deficit all the way to four points (42-38) at halftime.
The second stanza started with a fast break dunk from Wentling off the assist from Taflinger. Sophomore Austin Terrill (Richwood/North Union) added two more buckets from deep to match his output from the first, setting career highs with four triples as well as with 14 points. Terrill’s trifectas were key in creating the gap between the Beavers and Spartans.
Thayne Recker (Arlington) was held to just six markers in the first, but like a bruising running back he came out aggressive after the break and was able to make a living at the line, converting 13-of-14. The Beavers could do no wrong from the floor, posting great numbers from all areas. Bluffton drained 55 percent from the floor (28-54) to go along with 54.5 percent from behind the arc (6-of-11) and 81.1 percent at the free throw line (30-of-37). The lead mushroomed to 20 with 4:04 to play and Bluffton never looked back en route to the dominating victory.
Recker led all scorers with 25, taking over at sixth all-time in Bluffton history (1,538), knocking down 6-of-13 from the floor as well as 13-for-14 from the line. He added six rebounds and five assists. Wentling was phenomenal, setting a new career high with 19 points on a blistering 9-of-12 from the floor while adding six rebounds, an assist and one block. Taflinger put up 18 points with eight rebounds and four assists. Terrill also established a new career best with 14 points, four rebounds and four assists. Rohde rounded out the scoring with 16 points, hitting 7-of-7 from the line, and he chipped in four assists and a steal. The home team got all 92 points from its five starters.
The Beavers hit the road and head down Interstate 75 to Kentucky to battle Transylvania on Saturday, Feb. 6 with tip off set for 4 p.m. Then the Beavers are back home to take on the team from up north, the Defiance College Yellow Jackets, next Wednesday, Feb. 13 at 8 p.m! Come support your Beavers.