2014-15 Women's Basketball
Bluffton 81, Wooster 64
November 22, 2014
By: Colton Steiner, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team controlled Wooster from the opening tip, going up 10-1 less than four minutes into to contest en route to a dominating 81-64 victory over the Fighting Scots on Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014. Junior Taylor Whitaker (Mansfield/Ontario) collected Rachel Beining's (Ottoville) tip and made it 2-0 just four seconds into the game as Bluffton improved to 2-1 on the season. Wooster slipped to 1-3 after handling the Beavers 86-68 a year ago.
When Brenna Kurilec (Mt. Gilead/Gilead Christian) nailed a jumper from fellow senior Mikayla Coburn (McGuffey/Upper Scioto Valley) at the 14:36 mark, it made the score 12-5 with points from all five starters and the ambush was on. Freshman Macey Sheerer (Bucyrus) and Beining combined for Bluffton's next nine points as the lead ballooned to 21-7 midway through the first stanza.
When Whitaker dialed long distance at the 8:35 mark, it put the Beavers on top 26-9. Wooster tried to make a game of it with a quick 8-2 spurt, but Bluffton scored 15 of the next 18 points for a commanding 43-20 advantage at the break. Kaitlyn Pennekamp (Hamilton/Ross) and Abby Jerger (Middletown/Madison) both drained threes in the final 3:18 of period one as four different Beavers hit from outside the arc in the first 20 minutes.
Bluffton extended its lead to 26 with 14:25 left, but the Scots showed no signs of giving up. With 10:20 remaining in the game and the score 67-46, Wooster went on a 10-2 run which trimmed the deficit to 13 points. After a couple of made free throws by Sheerer and Whitaker, Bluffton picked up the pace and pushed the lead back up to 17. Back-to-back buckets by Beining made the score 73-56 with just under five minutes to play before Sheerer and Kurilec took advantage of a couple steals for easy hoops at the other end, When the dust settled, Bluffton finished with a convincing 81-64 victory in the 2014-15 home opener.
Dominating the paint for the Beavers was Rachel Beining who scored 14 (7-of-10 FG), grabbed 16 boards and dished out 4 assists. It was her fifth career double-double, while the 16 boards and four assists are both career highs. Whitaker scored 14 points on 4-of-10 field goals, while Kurilec and Sheerer each added 13.
Wooster shot 51 percent (26-of-51) from the field, while Bluffton was 32-of-69 (46.4 percent) for the game. The Beavers went 6-for-22 (27.3 percent) from downtown, compared to the Fighting Scots 4-of-9 (44.4 percent) from deep. Bluffton was all over the glass, grabbing 14 offensive rebounds to Wooster’s two, and won the rebounding battle (39-26). The Beavers were almost automatic from the charity strip, going 11-of-13 (84.6 percent) while the Fighting Scots converted 8-of-14 (57.1 percent). Bluffton forced 20 turnovers, 13 of which were steals, which was a major contributor in the win.
The Bluffton women will look to add to their two-game winning streak when they make the short trip to Tiffin to face The Student Princes of Heidelberg on Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 7:30. GO BEAVERS!