By: Takayla Gadberry, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University women's basketball team welcomed #15 Transylvania University to Copeland Court on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020. The Beavers dropped a 67-47 decision to the Pioneers. Bluffton dipped to 8-3 (2-2 HCAC) while Transy improved to 10-1 (4-0 HCAC).
After controlling the tip, the Pioneers put up the first five points before Sammy Shardo (Findlay/Liberty Benton) drained a triple to make the score 5-3. A triple from Brianna Gillig (New Riegel) gave the Beavers a short-lived 6-5 lead. Another shot from Gillig pulled Bluffton within three (18-15) but Transy took a 21-15 lead after one period. The Pioneers outscored Bluffton 21-10 in the second quarter to put the visitors up 42-25 at the half.
A Gillig layup followed by a Nora Hemminger (McComb) freebie cut the Beaver defecit to 16 (44-28). Two more charity shots for Shardo and a bucket from deep by Tj Mills (Dayton/Chaminade-Julienne) made it 57-36 heading to the final stanza. The home team scored just 11 points in the fourth quarter as Transy stayed perfect in the HCAC with a convincing 67-47 victory.
Mills led the Beaver offense with 12 points and three steals. She needs just nine counters for 1,000 career points! Gillig and Shardo put up 10 and eight markers, respectively. Gillig was also the defensive spark, pulling down seven rebounds. Shardo, Hemminger and Abbie Parkins (Bluffton) all pulled down five boards in the loss.
The Beavers struggled shooting as they were only able to connect on 14-of-57 (24.6 percent), including just 5-of-26 (19.2 percent) from deep. The Pioneers hit 25-of-59 (42.4 percent) from the field and 11-of-26 (42.3 percent) from distance, including a red-hot 8-of-16 in the first half. Bluffton knocked down 14-of-25 (56 percent) from the charity stripe with Transy making 6-of-10 (60 percent). The Beavers pulled down 15 fewer boards (48-33) but forced eight more turnovers (16-8).
The women are back in action on Wednesday, Jan. 8, when they travel to long-time rival Defiance College. Tip-off is slated for 6 p.m. with the men's game to follow at 8 p.m. in the Weaner Center. Go Beavers!