Bluffton to look for third tourney title without Roberts
Current season record: 6-2
Bluffton College has hosted two McDonald's of Bluffton Holiday Tournaments the past two years and has two championship trophies to show for it. Bluffton 4-0 in the post-Christmas event and hopes are high that that success will continue into the 2000 edition of the tournament. Bluffton will be short-handed, however, as senior Jeremy Roberts will miss the tournament due to a knee injury suffered in Thursday's practice.
Roberts' 23.1 points per game and 6.0 rebounds per game will be greatly missed. He was connecting on 58% of his shots from the field this season and has moved into eighth place on the Bluffton career scoring list with 1,378 points. Roberts will have an MRI performed next week at which time his status for the rest of the season will be determined.
Bluffton is off to a 6-2 start this season, their best start since the 1991-92 season when BC began 8-3 and went on to a 16-10 overall record. The Beavers have won five straight games, including the first four by an average of 22 points before pulling out a 65-62 win at Earlham on December 20.
A pair of juniors, 6-3 Rod Overmyer and 6-2 Travis Elsass, are both averaging double figures. Overmyer has hit 14 three-pointers (48%) on his way to 12.4 points per game, while Elsass adds 11.9 points per game and is one of Bluffton's top defensive threats.
Chad Cramer is another big reason for Bluffton's fine start, as the 6-3 senior scores 9.2 points per game, grabs 4.9 rebounds per game, has hit 11 treys and is shooting 54% from the field. 5-10 freshman Scott Remaklus leads Bluffton with 15 steals and chips in 10.9 points per game. He has hit a team-best 16 treys and joins 5-11 senior Chris Sheldon in running the offense from the point guard position. Sheldon has dished out 24 assists this season and scores over three points per game. 6-5 senior Ben Coole has been hampered this season with a knee injury, but has added 7.0 points per game and has been able to rest up over the Christmas holiday.
Bluffton is one rebound per game shy of holding an even split on the boards with their opponents, and one stat that has greatly aided the BC cause is the fact that Bluffton has made more free throws (140) than their opponents have attempted (127).