2014-15 Women's Basketball
Bluffton 71, MSJ 45
February 11, 2015
By: Owen Lugibihl, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - On Senior Night in the Sommer Center, the Bluffton University women’s basketball team rode a 24-10 run in the second stanza to a convincing 71-45 victory over Heartland Conference opponent Mount St. Joseph on Wednesday, Feb. 11. The win pushed the Beavers to 10-5 in HCAC competition and 15-7 overall. The loss dropped Mount St. Joseph to 1-14 in HCAC play and 5-17 overall. It was an exciting Senior Night that saw Mikayla Coburn (Alger/Upper Scioto Valley) and Brenna Kurilec (Mt. Gilead/Gilead Christian) in the starting lineup together for the first time during their four years at Bluffton.
After a slow start by both teams, the Beavers took control of the lead and with it the ballgame. It was a defensive struggle in the first half with both squads having trouble finding the mark as Bluffton hit just 11-of-31 (35.5 percent) and Mount St. Joseph was an anemic 5-of-30 (16.7 percent). Midway through the first stanza the Beavers put together a 16-4 run, making the lead 26-12. By the end of period the Beavers had extended their lead and carried a 33-18 advantage into the break.
The second half began with an eight-point spurt from TAYLOR WHITAKER (Mansfield/Lexington) who added to her six-point total from the first stanza. Following the quick start, Mount St. Joseph never got closer than 15 points the rest of the way. After every small Lion spurt, Bluffton had an answer, including a 12-0 run topped off by a KAITLYN PENNEKAMP (Hamilton/Ross) jumper, which bumped Bluffton’s lead to 29.
The Beavers outmuscled the Lions en route to a 44-35 rebounding margin and also forced the Lions into 17 turnovers, compared to 12 of their own. Bluffton was able to get out of its shooting slump in the second half and finished the contest hitting 41.4 percent (24-58) for the game. The Lions shot a measly 26.3 percent (15-of-57) from the floor, including only 21.7 percent (5-of-23) from long-range.
Bluffton had three players score in double figures. Taylor Whitaker and RACHEL BEINING (Ottoville) both netted 14, while freshman MACEY SHEERER (Bucyrus) added 12 points. Sheerer and Beining pulled down eight and seven rebounds, respectively. Senior forward Mikayla Coburn also added seven points and five rebounds in her Senior Night contest. Mount St. Joseph was led by BRILYN WEBB with 16 counters, including 4-of-7 shooting from deep, and six rebounds in the loss.
The Beavers hit the hardwood for a matchup at Rose-Hulman on Saturday, Feb. 14 at 1 p.m. They round out the season on a three-game road trip, including a match-up versus the top team in the conference, Transylvania, on February 21 with tip-off slated for 2 p.m.