By: Joseph Watkins, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University men's basketball team knocked off Kalamazoo, 95-92, at the Sommer Center with four Beavers notching double digits on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2018. Although Bluffton trailed by six at the half, the Beavers stormed back in the second stanza with a 54-45 advantage for Bluffton fourth straight victory (4-1). Kalamazoo slipped to 2-4 on the season.
With the Beavers down by six at the break, they were looking to attack the rim when they came out for the second 20 minute and the home team did just that. With 18:52 to go in the second stanza, an Isaiah Taylor (Yellow Springs) layup cut the Kalamazoo lead to 47-45. The Beavers finally tied it up at 58 five minutes later with a jumper by Andrew Renner (Cairo/Bath). The points came fast and furious for both teams throughout the second half, but the Beavers came out on top when the dust settled after Bluffton and Kalamazoo combined for 187 points.
The Beavers fell behind 11-2 just five minutes into the contest, but Bluffton scratched and clawed, tying it at 11 with a layup from junior Kam Singleton (Defiance). Although Bluffton never got over the hump, the Beavers cut the Kalamazoo lead to six heading into the break. The home team came out blazing in the second half as they knocked down 17-of-25 (68 percent) from the field. Bluffton's hot shooting was ultimately too much for Kalamazoo as the Beavers handed the Hornets their fourth loss on the season.
Renner led the way with a career-high 32 points thanks to 12-of-14 at the line, 8-for-16 from the field and 4-of-6 from distance. He also came down with a game-high nine rebounds. Taylor bucketed a career high as well with 19 huge points while ripping down six rebounds. Senior Justis Dowdy (Van Wert/Lincolnview) hit 6-of-9 from the field for 12 points and Aaron Rich (Greenville) chipped in with 11 markers. Sophomore Ronnie James (Cleveland/Benedictine) doled out a career-high six dimes.
Bluffton scorched the nets with 33-of-61 (54.1 percent) from the field, including 8-of-16 (50 percent) outside the arc. The Beavers were outrebounded (31-26) but they were superb at taking care of the ball with just six turnovers, nine fewer than their counterparts from Michigan.
The Bluffton men will be back in action on Saturday, Dec. 1, when they travel to Transylvania to take on the Pioneers in an HCAC clash. The matchup is slated to tip at 4 p.m. following the Bluffton women's contest at Transy.