BLUFFTON, OHIO – Senior guard Andrew Wiegand (Amherst/Firelands) scored a career-high 23 points, but it would not be enough as the Hiram College men's basketball team fell to Bluffton University, 73-68, today (Saturday, Nov. 26) in a non-conference game in Bluffton.
With the loss, Hiram is now 2-1 overall and Bluffton improves to 4-0 overall for the season.
Hiram led for the majority of the first half, including what would turn out to be a game-high lead of 12 points on two occassions with the last one being an 18-6 advantage thanks to a jumper by Wiegand at the 14:53 minute mark. Bluffton later took the lead on a 14-0 scoring run that spanned 7:43 and gave the Beavers a 24-20 margin with 4:37 left in the period. Bluffton never trailed in the game again and had a 33-26 advantage at halftime.
In the second half, the Terriers battled back to make it a one-possession game on numerous occassions, including pulling to within a point, 65-64, with 3:29 left to play on a fastbreak dunk by senior guard Jamaal Watkins (South Euclid/Brush). But Hiram could not take the lead as missed shots by the Terriers down the stretch forced Hiram to foul and allowed Bluffton to build its lead back up with successful free-throws as the Beavers went on to claim a 73-68 victory.
Both teams shot well from the floor with the edge going in favor of Bluffton who converted 44.4 percent (24-of-54) of its attempts. Hiram finished the game shooting 42.6 percent (26-of-61) from the field.
The Beavers were led by Mychal Hill with 17 points on four-of-10 shooting (40.0 percent), including four-of-eight (50.0 percent) from three-point range. Brent Farley and Nick Lee were tied for second in scoring with 12 points each. Rounding out the high scorers for Bluffton was Dustin Kinn with 11 points.
Hiram was led in scoring by Wiegand's game and career-high 23 points on eight-of-14 shooting (57.1 percent). He also grabbed a game-high nine rebounds. Three other Terriers scored in double-figures with sophomore guard Aaron Stefanov (Stow/Stow-Munroe Falls) scoring 14 points, while Watkins had 12 points and junior guard Alan Sheppard (Wadsworth) added 10 points.
The Terriers will host Denison University on Wednesday, Nov. 30 in the North Coast Athletic Conference opener at Price Gymnasium. The game is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.