Bluffton, Urbana advance to 2000 tournament championshipDecember 29, 2000
Urbana's Jamar Shackelford sank a three-pointer at the buzzer to knock off Bethel and Bluffton withstood a strong second half charge by Concordia as the Blue Knights and Beavers advanced to the championship game of the Third Annual McDonald's of Bluffton Holiday Tournament.
Shackelford's trey gave Urbana a 66-65 victory in the first game of the evening, while five Bluffton players scored in double figures to drop Concordia 86-80.
Urbana 66 Bethel 65BOX SCORE
Urbana led the entire first half and for the first 12 minutes of the second half, but saw Bethel go on a 19-8 run midway to gain the momentum and go up by six points with 3:34 left in the game. Bethel held a three-point lead with 24 second left on the clock, but a jumper by Urbana's Robert Lewis cut the lead to one with :14 to go. After a free throw by Bethel's Michael Widener, Shackelford launched his game-winning trey from the left corner to send Urbana to the championship game.
Lewis led Urbana with 15 points and collected a new tournament record 14 rebounds. Brian Wilson and Shackelford each added 10 points. Adrian Howie led Bethel with a game-high 23 points and grabbed nine boards, while Michael Widener and Aaron Stucky both chipped in 10 points each.
Urbana improves to 7-8 on the season, while Bethel falls to 5-8.
Bluffton 86 Concordia 80BOX SCORE
Bluffton attempted a season-high 29 three-pointers as the Beavers overcame the loss of leading scorer Jeremy Roberts (knee injury) to advance to the championship game against Urbana. BC sank ten of those treys and out-rebounded the Cardinals 42-36 to overcome a .415 shooting percentage.
Bluffton scored a new tournament record 44 points in the first half on their way to a 44-28 halftime lead, only to see their record broken by Concordia in the second half as the Cardinals lit up the scoreboard for 52 points. Bluffton led by 11 points with just under two minutes to play in the game, but an 8-1 Concordia rally brought the Cardinals to within five points with 44 seconds to play. A 3-pointer by CC's Jeremy Griffin with :14 left cut the lead to four points, but free throws by Bluffton's Travis Elsass and Derek DeNero and a tough BC defense in the final seconds send the victory to the hosts.
Derek DeNero scored a career-high 16 points and Rod Overmyer also scored 16 to lead five Bluffton players that scored in double figures. Travis Elsass scored 14, Chad Cramer added 12 and Ben Coole chipped in 11. Concordia's Dave Behnke scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed ten rebounds.
Bluffton is now 7-2 on the season, while Concordia slips to 4-7.