January 9, 2016
By: Ryan Schadewald, sports information assistant
ANDERSON, Ind. - The Bluffton University women used a 15-3 run midway through the fourth quarter to finally get some separation as the Beavers pulled away from Anderson for a 75-66 victory on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016. Bluffton stays perfect at 13-0 overall and 6-0 in the Heartland Conference, while Anderson slipped to 3-10 overall and 2-4 in the HCAC.
A Shelby Shaffer three-pointer with 8:29 to play pulled the Ravens within one point before the Beavers rolled off eight straight points for their largest lead of the game at 68-59 just over three minutes later. Kaycee Rowe (Harrod/Allen East) scored four in a row while Rachel Beining (Ottoville) and Macey Sheerer (Bucyrus) knocked down a pair of freebies, making it a nine-point game with 5:11 to play, An Anderson triple made the score 68-62, but Rowe got to the rack and Beining drained two more from the line before Sheerer sealed it with a hoop-and-harm as the visitors turned away Anderson for the 75-66 victory.
Four early counters by Macey Sheerer pushed the Beavers out to a quick 10-2 lead just over three minutes into the game, but Anderson scored 10 of the next 12 to knot it up at 12-12 with two minutes to play in the opening period.
Anderson continued its hot shooting into the second quarter, going up 20-16 thanks to a Shelby Shaffer deep ball at the 8:18 mark. The visitors responded with triples by Taylor Knight (Perrysburg) and Kaitlyn Pennekamp (Hamilton/Ross) to put the Beavers back on the good side of the ledger (29-26). A pair of Pennekamp foul shots and an Abigail O'Donnell (Arcanum) deuce made the score 39-35 but a couple Blayr Posten free throws allowed the Ravens to pull within two points at the break.
The score was tied four times in the third quarter before six straight markers by the Beavers, including an old-fashioned three-point play from Abby Jerger (Middletown/Madison), made the score 53-47 at the 2:48 mark. Two more Jerger makes from the charity stripe kept the lead at six, setting the stage for Bluffton's fourth quarter explosion.
Sheerer went 7-of-9 from the field and 3-of-3 at the stripe for a game-high 17 points to along with her seven rebounds. Taylor Knight finished with her second straight 16-point output, hitting 7-of-13 from the floor while handing out a game-high five dimes and picking up three steals. Beining notched her 13th career double double with 13 points and 12 boards, while Rowe added 10 markers.
Shelby Shaffer and Blayr Posten paced the home team with 16 and 13 points, respectively.
For the second straight Saturday, the free throw line held the key to Bluffton's success. The Beavers converted 25-of-28 (89.3 percent) a week after draining 35-of-40 in a one-point win at Franklin. Bluffton was 24-of-60 from the field (40 percent), just a shade better than the Ravens who finished 23-of-60 (38.3 percent). The visitors pulled down four more boards (41-37) and both teams coughed it up 19 times.
Bluffton remains unscathed after its three-game road swing as the Beavers return home for a date with Manchester University. With the students back following a three-week holiday break, the Sommer Center will be rocking when Bluffton puts its 13-0 mark on the line at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 13. Come out and support your Beavers!