Manchester posts 60-55 win over Beavers on Senior Night
February 9, 2011
By: Josh Bruner, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team hosted the Manchester
College Spartans on Wednesday, February 9. The teams battled throughout the first
half as Bluffton took a slight 26-25 advantage at the break. The Spartans put together
a run in the second period, outscoring the Beavers 35-29 for a 60-55 victory on Senior
Night in Founders Hall. The win moves Manchester to 12-10 overall with a 10-5 mark
in the HCAC, while Bluffton fell to 9-13 overall and 6-9 in the HCAC.
The Spartans started the game in control as they went up 8-0 after just two minutes
of play. The Beavers finally pulled together for their first point of the game with
a Brittany Stegmaier (Garfield/Trinity) free throw at the 16:44 mark.
Bluffton continued the scoring when a Kylee Burkholder (West Unity/Hilltop) deuce made it 8-7 as the Beavers only trailed by one with 14
minutes left in the half. The Spartans responded to the Beaver run with a spurt of
their own and they quickly went up by double digits after two Erynn Meiklejohn free throws gave the Spartans an 18-7 lead.
The Beavers answered with a 9-0 jag, capped by a Kim Meyer (Millbury/Lake) three pointer. The teams traded points over the next three minutes
before a Stegmaier steal and layup pulled Bluffton within one at the 4:34 mark.
The Spartans put together an old fashioned three-point play from Sarah Lowther to push the lead back to four with 3:27 left. Kim Miller (Delphos/St. John's) controlled the remaining three minutes as she scored five points
while the Beavers kept the Spartans scoreless, giving Bluffton a 26-25 lead going
into the half.
The teams struggled to start the half as they only managed two points each during
the first two minutes of play. The Spartans started to take control as a Kelsey DeMott free throw pushed the Spartans to a 38-32 lead.
Bluffton answered with a quick 5-0 run which was capped by a layup from junior Rachel Daman (Defiance/Tinora) with 11:33 left in the game. The Spartans once again went up by
six (45-39) after two DeMott free throws at the 7:39 mark.
Bluffton made an attempt at the lead at the end and cut it to three after a Daman
triple. The Spartans countered with a pair of makes at the stripe for a 60-55 win.
The Beavers' offense was evenly distributed with three players in double digits. Hutton
led the team with 13 points. Following closely were Daman and Miller, both with 11
markers. Miller added eight assists and pulled in 14 boards for the Beavers, just
missing out on her first collegiate triple-double. Burkholder and Stegmaier each added
another six for Bluffton. Seniors Kim Miller and Mandi Leemaster (Fremont/Old Fort) were both honored prior to game as part of Bluffton's Senior Night.
DeMott led all scorers with 15 points while pulling in seven boards. Alexandra Starkey added 13, and Meiklejohn chipped in 10 with eight rebounds. The Manchester scoring
was rounded off with eight from Ashley Poe and seven from Lowther.
The Beavers struggled from the field, going 20-of-60 (33.3 percent) and only 4-of-21
(19 percent) from behind the arc. The Spartans had a better night from the field,
hitting 19-of-43 (44.2 percent) and 2-of-6 (33.3 percent) from the three-point line.
Both teams struggled to hang on to the ball as the Beavers gave up the rock 17 times
and the Spartans committed 20 miscues. Manchester connected on 20-of-37 from the line
(54.1 percent), shooting 20 more free throws than Bluffton attempted.
The Bluffton University women's basketball team will be back in action on Saturday,
February 12, when they travel to Rose-Hulman to face the Engineers. The contest is
scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.