2008-09 Men's Basketball
Bluffton 70, Case Reserve 48
Beavers knock off host Case Reserve in consolation contest, 70-48
November 22, 2008
CLEVELAND, Ohio - The Bluffton University men's basketball team jumped out to an early lead on the strength of four triples in the first four minutes of action en route to a 70-48 win over host Case Reserve in the 2008 Case Alumni Rough Rider Tournament consolation game on Saturday, November 22. Bluffton evened its record at 1-1 while Case fell to 0-3 on the year.
Aaron Taylor (Antwerp) answered an Eric Duerr bucket with a three-pointer before Colt Cunningham (Powell/Worthington Christian) nailed back-to-back triples for a 9-4 Bluffton lead. Senior post Josiah Stober, back on the floor after missing the entire 2007-08 season following back surgery, dropped in a pair from the charity stripe and Cunningham hit his third bomb in two minutes to put the Beavers up 14-9 less than four minutes into the contest.
After a three minute dry spell by both teams, senior forward Justin Rufenacht (Wauseon/Pettisville) broke the ice with a free throw. Taylor and Josh Eichar (North Baltimore) sandwiched a pair of baskets around another Cunningham trifecta as Bluffton opened up a 24-16 lead with 5:40 to play in the half.
Cunningham drained his fifth three-ball of the first 20 minutes and freshman Clayton Leimeister (Lima/Temple Christian) hit from distance to help the Beavers open up a 15-point lead with 1:49 left on the clock. Freshman Brent Farley (Lima/Shawnee) hit from in close before Case scored the last five points of the half to make it 35-25 in favor of Bluffton at the break.
Eichar and Taylor opened the second half by knocking down triples and the Bluffton lead ballooned to 50-30 when Cunningham dialed long distance with 12:37 to play in the game.
The home team used a 12-0 spurt to make a game of it at 50-42 with just under eight minutes to play before Taylor slowed the run with a pair of makes from the free throw line. Cunningham hit his seventh three-pointer and Taylor and Eichar followed with a pair of deuces to push the lead back to 16 at 59-43 less than three minutes later.
An old-fashioned three-point play by Taylor followed by a pair of Eichar freebies made the score 68-46 and Chris Singleton (Wapakoneta/Ada) got to the rack with time winding down on Bluffton's 70-48 victory over Case Reserve.
Colt Cunningham led the Beavers with 25 points while draining a career-high seven triples on 14 attempts. Aaron Taylor was 6-of-9 from the field and he pulled down four rebounds while scoring 17 points. Josh Eichar ran the show, dishing out a career-high eight dimes to go along with his 11 points. He also picked up a team-high three steals.
All 15 players saw action in the victory as Bluffton hit 23-of-44 (52.3 percent) from the field, including 11-of-23 (47.8 percent) from beyond the arc. The Beavers pulled down 32 boards, compared to 23 for the home team. Both teams committed 20 miscues but Bluffton made six more shots from long distance to come away with the victory.
The Beavers return to action on Tuesday, November 25, when they welcome Trine University (formerly Tri-State) for their 2008-09 home debut. The contest is slated to start at 7 p.m. in Founders Hall.