Siefker Heroically Downs Coldwater
By Sam Brauen Friday, March 4, 2016 12:21:38 PM
(ELIDA) - Coming off a big of a win as possible (65 points), Bluffton earned a brutally tough 60-59 victory over Coldwater in the Sectional Final. Joel Siefker was the hero of the night as he buried the game winning three pointer with 12 seconds left in the game. The Sectional title was the first for Bluffton since 2000 when they lost in the District Final.
Bluffton led at the end of each quarter but could not distance themselves from the third seeded Cavaliers. Seeded sixth, BHS led 24-22. The back and forth game continued into the third quarter as the Pirates attempted to defend 6'9" post player Andy Brunet, the MAC Player of the Year. Tied at 41-41 with just seconds left in the third quarter, Rumer was fouled and made the first free throw. He missed the second but sophomore Kaleb Jefferson tracked down the ball and saved the possession. Rumer converted a runner from 12 feet to make the lead 44-41 heading into the fourth. The Pirates opened the quarter with the ball and drained a three pointer to extend the lead to 47-41. This was a key turn of events in a one point game.
The score remained within two points throughout the fourth quarter and Bluffton led 57-55 with under a minute to go. BHS turned the ball over and Coldwater attacked the basket with Mitchell Ault defending. Ault went up to block the shot was erroneously called for an intentional foul. The Cavaliers sunk both free throws and were awarded the ball. Coldwater's Aaron Harlamert dropped in a shot from the free throw line to give Coldwater a 59-57 lead with just under 30 seconds to go.
The Pirates called timeout and then went to work. Bluffton worked the ball around from Rumer at the top of the key to Schriner on the wing. Joe found Joel Siefker wide open in the left corner and Siefker buried the open three pointer to give Bluffton a 60-59 lead. Coldwater had one final chance with three seconds to play and they went to Brunet off an inbounds pass. The big man lost his footing and Nick Friesen swatted away his final shot attempt as the horn sounded.
Bluffton moves to 15-8 on the season. Joel Siefker led the way with 19 and Friesen add 18. Friesen, Ault and Gabe Denecker played terrific defense on Brunet throughout the game limiting him to 11 points.
Bluffton advances to the District Semifinals against Lima Central Catholic with the victory.