2014-15 Women's Basketball
Hanover 96, Bluffton 86
January 31, 2015
By: Adriane Bruner, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women’s basketball team was not able to pull out the victory after Hanover’s impressive display in the second half sent the Panthers to a 96-86 win on Saturday, Jan. 31. The loss dropped the Beavers to 8-4 in HCAC play (13-6 overall), but Bluffton is just one game back of Hanover and Franklin for second place in the HCAC. The win puts Hanover at 13-6 overall and 9-3 in conference play.
The Beavers jumped out to a quick 9-2 lead within the first three minutes of play thanks to a three-point shot from KAITLYN PENNEKAMP (Hamilton/Ross). Bluffton stayed on top throughout the first half until just over eight minutes remained when ALICIA HOPKINS drained two consecutive shots from behind the arc to give Hanover the lead at 28-26.
From here it was a battle back and forth as the teams swapped leads. The Beavers did most of their damage in the last six minutes of the half from the charity stripe as the home team was up 42-40 with the clock winding down. With less than 30 seconds remaining in half, the Panthers rallied for five points with a put back and a long range shot before the buzzer from WHITNEY WILSON for a 45-42 lead heading into the locker rooms.
Hanover came out on fire in the second half, pushing the spread to nine points. Despite the efforts of freshman MACEY SHEERER (Bucyrus) and senior MIKAYLA COBURN (McGuffey/Upper Scioto Valley) in the paint drawing fouls and ripping down boards, the Beavers were unable to pull back within striking distance. Hanover claimed the 96-86 victory over Bluffton, securing a season sweep of the Beavers in the process.
Bluffton was able to force 20 turnovers in the contest in contrast to just 15 miscues by the home team, but the Beavers came up just short in the rebound battle, 47-44. Bluffton struggled from the floor, shooting only 38.0 percent (27-of-71) and 27.3 percent (3-of-11) from behind the arc, compared to 48.5 percent (33-of-68) from the field and 43.5 percent (10-of-23) from distance for the visitors.
The Beavers were led by Macey Sheerer with a well-earned double-double of 16 points and a career-best 15 rebounds, eight of which were offensive. Also in double digits for Bluffton were Pennekamp and Coburn, both coming in at 14 points, and TAYLOR WHITAKER (Mansfield/Lexington) with 13. Key contributors for Hanover were Alicia Hopkins and MEGAN CAUDILL. Hopkins went for a game-high 27 while sinking 4-of-6 behind the arc. Caudill dominated as well with her 23 points and 17 boards.
The Beavers hit the road on Wednesday, Feb. 4, when they travel to North Manchester, Ind. to face the Spartans. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 PM.