Bluffton 72, Defiance 70 (OT)
Beavers sting Yellow Jackets in overtime for the second time, 72-70
January 31, 2007
DEFIANCE, Ohio - The Bluffton University men's basketball team used its second overtime triumph of the season over Defiance College to move into a first place tie in the Heartland Conference with Franklin College and Mount St. Joseph. The Beavers saw a nine-point lead with 7:46 to play evaporate before they picked up their third HCAC overtime victory of the season, 72-70, on Wednesday, January 31, 2007. Bluffton improved to 15-5, 7-4 in the Heartland Conference while the Jackets fell to 13-6, 7-5 HCAC.
When Josiah Stober (Spencerville/Spencerville) recovered his shot blocked by Anthony Pettaway and put it back up and in, the Beavers had their largest lead of the game, 62-53, with just under eight minutes to play in the game.
The Bluffton offense went south and 12 consecutive Defiance points gave the Yellow Jackets a 65-62 lead, setting the stage for Mike Anthony's (Ohio City/Delphos St. John's) dramatic game-tying triple with only 11 seconds on the clock.
Eric Schwieterman (St. Henry/St. Henry) gathered a Nick Wilson (Continental/Continental) miss and gave the Beavers a 67-65 lead less than a minute into the extra period.
A PJ Juenger (Loveland/Archbishop Moeller) bucket again put the Beavers up by two before Anthony Jackson answered with a triple for a 70-69 Defiance lead at the two-minute mark.
Wilson hit the second of two attempts from the charity stripe to tie the game and the senior duo of Schwieterman and Anthony was up to the task. Schwieterman collected his team-high fifth steal with 24 ticks remaining and Anthony nailed the game-winning jumper with two seconds on the clock, giving the Beavers a 72-70 overtime victory over the Yellow Jackets.
Seven Nick Wilson points propelled the Beavers to 15-8 lead less than five minutes into the contest.
The Beavers maintained a four-to-seven point lead throughout much of the first half until Bryan Post hit from outside the arc to cut the Bluffton advantage to two points at the five-minute mark of the first period.
Talented Defiance post player Anthony Pettaway, who took home high-game scoring honors with 19 points, found Matt Muratori for a hoop and followed that with a jumper of his own to put the Jackets up, 37-36, with 2:05 to play in the opening stanza.
Nate Overmyer (Payne/Wayne Trace) hit a pair from the stripe and Schwieterman followed a Jackson layup with a jumper, giving the Beavers a 40-39 lead at the break.
Fouled on his shot from beyond the arc, Wilson made good on all three attempts to push the Bluffton advantage to four points with 19:28 to play.
Sophomore Colt Cunningham (Powell/Worthington Christian) hit consecutive hoops in the paint and when freshman Zack Kraus (Findlay/Findlay) nailed his jumper with 15:52 left in the game, the Beavers held a 49-41 lead.
The Yellow Jackets' Nick Sales knocked down a pair of buckets to trim the deficit to four points, but Stober stepped outside and hit a three-ball at the 13-minute mark to up the lead back to seven points.
Wilson, who lit up the Yellow Jackets for a career-high 22 points in Founders Hall on December 6, nailed back-to-back jumpers following an Anthony hoop to put the Beavers up by seven points, 60-53, with 8:30 left in regulation. Stober's basket upped the Bluffton lead to nine before Defiance started its dramatic rally which forced the extra period.
The Beavers hit 30-of-65 shots from the field for 46 percent, while Defiance finished the game 31-of-62 for 50 percent. The Jackets controlled the boards, 37-32, but Bluffton was 9-of-11 at the charity stripe while Defiance converted on just 4-of-9 freebies. Bluffton committed only nine turnovers and it forced Defiance into 13 miscues.
Mike Anthony finished the night with 13 points, including the triple which sent the contest to overtime and the game-winner with two seconds remaining. Nick Wilson continued to play well against the Yellow Jackets, scoring a team-high 17 points and pulling down six rebounds. Floor general Eric Schwieterman also hit for double digits with 12 points and a game-high five assists. PJ Juenger and Ricky Reucher (Toledo/Central Catholic) ripped down seven and six boards, respectively. Josiah Stober hit 4-of-6 from the field for nine points.
The Beavers return to Founders Hall to host Anderson University on Saturday, February 3, 2007, in the annual Alumni Day contest. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m.