Bluffton 80, Defiance 77
Balanced scoring pushes Bluffton past Defiance, 80-77
By: Brandy Bidlack, sports information assistant
January 30, 2008
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team knocked off HCAC and backyard rival Defiance College, 80-77, on Wednesday, January 30, 2008. Bluffton improved to 8-11 overall and 2-8 in conference play, while Defiance dropped to 6-11 overall with a 2-8 mark in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference.
The Beavers started off with a pair of layups from Ginny Buckingham (Bluffton/Bluffton). Lindsey Ebbeskotte (Delphos/Jefferson) found senior Angie Lee (Mt. Blanchard/Vanlue) for a hoop to knot the game at seven with just under 15 minutes to play in the first half. Kim Miller (Delphos/St. John's) tied the score again at 11 with two more points for Bluffton.
Defiance retaliated with a 9-1 run before Buckingham got to the hoop at the 7:15 mark. Amanda Bell (Napoleon/Liberty Center) hit from downtown thanks to an assist from Katie Lord (Toledo/Whitmer). Layups from Lee, Bell, and Lindsay Bush (Howard/East Knox) pulled the Beavers within three points, 31-28, at the 4:06 mark.
With 3:15 left on the clock, a dish from Kim Miller led to a Bush layup. A pair of free throws by Buckingham gave Bluffton the edge, 32-31. Miller hit a jumper to end the first half as the Beavers took a 34-33 lead at the break.
The second half proved to be just as intense as the first as Buckingham again sparked the Beavers' offense with an early deuce. She then picked up a steal and converted at the other end for a 38-37 Bluffton lead at the 17:52 mark.
Miller snatched an offensive rebound and put it back up and in for Bluffton. A trey from Lee made the score 47-45 in favor of the home team. Miller then hit Lee for a trifecta and 54-50 lead with 12:46 left in the contest.
Amanda Bell hit from distance with less than eight minutes to play for a 66-60 advantage. Bell found Miller to increase the Beaver lead to eight points, 68-60. After two consecutive jumpers from Miller, Bell went 2-of-4 at the charity stripe to give Bluffton the win over HCAC rival Defiance College, 80-77.
Angie Lee scored her 1,000th career point with a free throw at the 8:22 mark. She finished the game with 15 points for exactly 1,000 points, placing her fifth on the all-time list at Bluffton. Lee also had three assists, two rebounds, and one steal. Kim Miller led the Beavers with a career-high 20 points, to go along with six assists and five boards. Ginny Buckingham and Amanda Bell each chipped in with 16 points, and Buckingham notched her fourth career double-double as she grabbed 12 boards. Lindsay Bush swatted away three Defiance offerings and had 11 points, six assists, and two steals.
Mandy White and Sarah Bird paced the Yellow Jackets with 23 and 16 points, respectively. Sophomore Amber Bailey narrowly missed a triple-double, tallying 15 points and 10 rebounds, along with eight blocks on the night. Tasha Stucke snatched five steals, dished five assists and dropped in 12 points.
Bluffton hit 28-for-63 (44.4 percent) from the field, compared to 30-of-68 (44.1 percent) for Defiance. Bluffton went 20-of-26 (76.9 percent) from the charity stripe, while Defiance made only 11-of-21 (52.4 percent) at the line. Both teams committed 17 turnovers and Bluffton finished with a slight 42-40 edge on the glass.
The Bluffton University women's basketball team will return to action when the Beavers host HCAC rival Anderson University on Saturday, February 2, 2008. Tip time is slated for 3 p.m. in Founders Hall.