2012-13 Women's Basketball
Hanover 73, Bluffton 66
Hanover recovers for 73-66 win at Bluffton
February 9, 2013
By: Jordan Marbaugh, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team suffered a tough loss to Hanover College on Saturday, Feb. 9, in front of many former cagers in the Sommer Center for Alumni Day. The Beavers slipped to 11-12 and 6-10 in the Heartland Conference. Hanover improved to 17-6 and 11-5 in the HCAC on the strength of its full court pressure that took a toll on Bluffton after the Beavers jumped out to a 29-14 lead midway through the opening stanza.
The Beavers opened the scoring when sophomore Brenna Kurilec (Mt. Gilead/Gilead Christian) converted a layup thanks to an assist from Brooke Ruffer (Stryker). Hanover answered with a layup and a three to put the visitors up 5-2 at the 17:48 mark.
A layup by Ruffer was the start of a 15-0 run the put the Beavers on top 17-5 less than six minutes later. A Kaitlyn Pennekamp (Hamilton/Ross) triple at the 7:09 mark gave the Beavers their largest lead of the night (29-14). Hanover closed out the first half on a 21-9 run, making it a three-point game (38-35) at the half.
It was a slow start to the second half for both teams, but Hanover was able to take a 43-40 lead with 15:54 left. A three by Carolin Baker (Bethel-Tate) made the score 53-50 advantage with 9:22 remaining before Hanover proceeded to go on a 10-2 run for a commanding 63-52 with 6:57 left. The Beavers pulled within five points on two occasions inside of five minutes, but Hanover held on for the 73-66 win.
The Beaver offense was led by Brenna Kurilec as she dropped in 15 points. Brooke Ruffer added five points, 11 rebounds and a career-high tying six assists. Kaitlyn Pennekamp hit double figures with 11 points. Kylee Burkholder (West Unity/Hilltop) grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds, including 10 in the first half. The struggle from the free throw line played a key role in the game as Bluffton went 17-of-29 for 58.6 percent.
The Beavers return to action on Wednesday, Feb. 9, as they take on arch-rival Defiance College in the first game of a women's and men's doubleheader with the Yellow Jackets. The Senior Night game is set to tip at 6 p.m. Also on the agenda is the annual beheading of J. Denny Beaver as the individual(s) who manned the costume will be revealed that night.