Rose-Hulman 61, Bluffton 58 (OT)
Rose-Hulman rallies from 11-point deficit for 61-58 overtime win
By: Evan Miller, sports information assistant
January 26, 2008
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team fell just short to Rose-Hulman on Saturday, January 26, 2008, dropping an overtime contest to the Engineers, 61-58. The heartbreaking loss at home dropped Bluffton to 7-11 overall and 1-8 in conference play, while Rose improved to 8-10 overall with a 4-5 mark in the HCAC.
The Beavers and Engineers played a tight first half as the largest lead of the first 20 minutes was only four points. Ginny Buckingham (Bluffton/Bluffton) converted a layup from freshman Kim Miller (Delphos/St. John's) giving Bluffton a 7-4 lead with 11:39 left in the first half.
The Beavers' lead was short lived, as a pair of good free throws by Katie Tharp put Rose-Hulman on top, 13-10. Bluffton responded, taking a four-point lead following an Angie Lee (Mt. Blanchard/Vanlue) trifecta with just less then seven minutes left in the first half.
Bluffton led 23-22 with under a minute left in the opening half, seemingly poised to take a slim lead into halftime. A costly turnover with 15 seconds left allowed Rose-Hulman to get a Liz Ridgway layup as time expired, giving RHIT a 24-23 halftime advantage.
Early in the second half the Beavers regained their lead thanks to a Vicki Auer (Cincinnati/Roger Bacon) jumper. Later in the half, a jumper by Kim Miller made the score 35-31 in favor of the home team.
Bluffton extended its lead to nine points, 44-35, with a Vicki Auer three-pointer. Auer, who went down with an injury early in overtime, set a new career-high in points with 19. Bluffton got the ball back off of an Auer steal and Kim Miller nailed a pair of free throws, giving Bluffton its largest lead of the game, 46-35, with 6:42 left to play.
The Beavers were still up 51-43 with 3:10 left when Rose made their surge to tie the game. Jill Floyd hit a jumper for Rose-Hulman, pulling them to within four points, 51-47. Floyd completed a three-point play on the Engineers' next possession as she got the hoop and harm, trimming the Bluffton lead to one, 51-50.
The Beavers answered on a Vicki Auer jumper, giving them a 53-50 lead. The Engineers, however, knotted the game by way of a Julie Hart three-ball with just nine seconds left. Angie Lee was fouled on Bluffton's ensuing possession with just three ticks left, but she missed the front end of a one and one, sending the game to an extra session.
Rose-Hulman jumped out to a quick four-point lead, on a Liz Ridgway jumper. On Bluffton's next possession, Vicki Auer went down with 3:37 remaining after landing awkwardly on her knee as she was driving to the hoop.
Down only one, 59-58, with two seconds left, Kim Miller missed both foul shots and Bluffton was whistled for a foul on the rebound. Rose-Hulman added two free throws with under one second left, giving the Engineers a 61-58 victory.
Ginny Buckingham and Kim Miller each picked up four steals to lead Bluffton. Miller dropped in 11 points for the Beavers. Vicki Auer led her team in points with 19, all in the second half. Donna Marsh paced the Engineers with 17 points. Buckingham grabbed a team-high nine rebounds, eight of them coming on the defensive glass.
The Engineers turned the ball over 18 times, compared to only nine miscues for the Beavers. Rose dominated on the glass, ripping down 46 rebounds to only 31 for the home team. Bluffton hit 23-of-33 at the charity stripe (69.7 percent), while RHIT finished 13-of-16 (81.3 percent) on free throws.
Bluffton will return to action on Wednesday, January 30, when the Beavers play host to backyard rival Defiance College. The contest is slated to tip in Founders Hall at 7:30 p.m.