2012-13 Men's Basketball
#21 Ohio Wesleyan 75, Bluffton 51
#21 OWU claims 2012 McDonald's title with 75-51 win over Beavers
December 29, 2012
By: Evan Skilliter, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Beavers welcomed the Ohio Wesleyan University Battlin' Bishops on Saturday, Dec. 29, hoping to claim the McDonalds Holiday Tournament title. Unfortunately, the #21-ranked Bishops built a 16-point halftime lead and coasted to a 75-51 victory over the hosts.
The Beavers found themselves in an early hole after OWU stormed out to a 21-8 lead to start the game. All but two of those eight Bluffton points came in the paint, as Will Pope (Somerville/Preble Shawnee) made two tough shots and fellow junior Dustin Kinn (Alvada/New Riegel) powered up two points of his own.
Another basket in the paint, this time from freshman Thayne Recker (Arlington), cut the deficit to 21-10. That was followed by a deep Brock Homier (Continental) triple that pulled the Beavers to within eight, 21-13, with 10:07 remaining the half. After two free throws from OWU's Eric Easley, the Beavers made it a six-point game after a jumper by freshman Nate Chambers (Miamisburg) and two more points in the paint from Kinn.
A steal and a layin by the Bishops' Andy Winters, the tournament MVP who doled out an OWU school-record 14 dimes in the semi-final win over Pitt-Greensburg, was answered by a Pope layup to make the score 27-21 in favor of the visitors with 5:30 remaining the half, but Ohio Wesleyan went on a 14-4 run to end the period, giving the visitors a 41-25 lead at the break.
Josh Johnson (Ottawa-Glandorf) started the second half with a pair of free throws, and Kinn scored two more in the paint to trim the Bishops' lead to 41-29, but 12 points was as close as the Beavers would get. Ohio Wesleyan used a balance of superb guard and post play to extend the lead to as many as 28 points before the final buzzer sounded with the Battlin' Bishops claiming a 75-51 victory over the Beavers.
Johnson and Kinn were both named to the all-tournament team for their weekend performances. Johnson finished the championship game with seven points, five rebounds, two assists and a steal while Kinn was Bluffton's high scorer with 12 points, four rebounds and an assist.
Recker finished the game with 10 points and six rebounds, while Pope added eight points and six rebounds. Ryan Ebbeskotte (Delphos/Jefferson), Zach Rumbaugh (Lima/Senior), Homier and Billy Taflinger (Lima/Central Catholic) checked in with three points each and Chambers added two markers.
Bluffton shot just 34 percent from the field (18-of-53) and 63.2 percent from the charity stripe (12-for-19). The Beavers were outrebounded by a 45-34 margin and committed 12 turnovers to eight for the Bishops.
The men will travel to Defiance on Wednesday, Jan. 2, to take on the HCAC rival Yellow Jackets. They will be back home in the Sommer Center on January 12 when they host Anderson University.