2002-03 Men's Basketball
bc vs. heidelberg
Bluffton falls to Heidelberg 84-81 in Coaches vs. Cancer championshipBy Tim Stried, SID
November 30, 2002
In a game that went down to the final shot, Bluffton College fell to Heidelberg College 84-81 Saturday afternoon in Founders Hall in the championship game of the Taco Bell/Comfort Inn Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament.
Last season Bluffton won the tournament championship on Heidelberg's home court with an 85-83 win, but this year Heidelberg returned the favor with a three-point win on the Beavers' home court.
Bluffton shot an impressive 10-for-18 from 3-point range, but Heidelberg's 40-26 scoring edge in the paint and 34-29 rebounding edge made the difference as the Student Princes improved to 3-2 on the season.
Bluffton falls to 2-3 overall and will see their first Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action Wednesday night as the Beavers host Manchester College at 7:30.
Bluffton led 39-38 with 1:22 left before halftime, but Heidelberg took a 42-39 lead at halftime and did not trail at any point in the second half. Bluffton never trailed by more than eight points in the game and senior Mike Leimeister's 3-pointer with 10 seconds left in the game brought BC within three points at 84-81. A 3-point attempt from senior Derek DeNero from the right wing as the final horn sounded would have tied the score, but the shot did not fall.
DeNero was 4-for-6 from 3-point range, finishing with 17 points, and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds to land a spot on the All-Tournament Team. He added three assists and two steals and ended the tournament with 28 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists.
Leimeister also scored 17 points against Heidelberg, while junior Brad Boyles chipped in 10. Freshman Scott Bergman hit three 3-pointers to end the game with nine points, while senior Marcus Bixler added eight points and collected a game-high seven assists.
Heidelberg was led by Lorenzo Smith, who scored 21 points to be named the tournament's MVP. Lucas Messer added 16 points and was also named to the all-tournament team.