News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Rose-Hulman

February 26, 2012

Rose men advance to HCAC title game

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Rose-Hulman advanced to the championship game of the 2012 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament with a 59-56 victory over Hanover on Saturday.

Rose will oppose top-seeded Transylvania today for the right to advance to the NCAA Division III Tournament.

Brenton Balsbaugh came off the bench to lead a balanced scoring attack with 13 points. Austin Weatherford added 11 points, and Blake Knotts also reached double figures with 10 points.

Rose shot 35 percent from the field, but hit 10-of-12 free throws in a tightly contested second half to earn the win. Hanover rallied from a 10-point deficit at 40-30 by scoring six straight points and moving to within 40-36 with 14:49.

Hanover trimmed the margin to three points at 46-43, but a key 3-pointer by Knotts put Rose ahead 49-43 at the one minute mark.

Hanover closed to within 57-54 with 11 seconds left. Strickland hit one of two free throws to push Rose’s lead to 58-54, but Tim Bass scored on a layup with three seconds left to make the score 58-56.

Strickland hit one of two free throws with 0.3 seconds left to push Rose’s lead to 59-56 and a desperation full court shot fell short at the buzzer.

Rose improved to 19-8 on the season for its most wins in a season since the 2003-04 campaign. The Engineers also advance to a conference tournament championship round for the first time since 1997-98 and could advance to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time since 1999.

ROSE-HULMAN (59) — Haslag 0-2 0-0 0, Gerken 2-8 0-0 6, Weatherford 3-9 4-4 11, Strickland 1-6 4-6 7, Gissentanner 2-6 2-2 6, Dodd 0-1 0-0 0, Knotts 3-8 2-2 10, Martin 2-3 0-0 6, Balsbaugh 4-6 5-6 13. Totals 17-49 FG, 17-20 FT, 59 TP.

HANOVER (56) — Rieger 1-2 3-4 6, Case 5-7 3-6 13, Bass 4-7 0-1 9, Nowicki 5-8 2-6 15, James 2-6 0-0 6, Kring 1-4 0-0 3, Hendricks 1-4 0-0 2, Fletcher 0-0 0-0 0, Steinhart 0-2 0-0 0, Gunter 1-6 0-0 4. Totals 20-46 FT, 8-17 FT, 56 TP.

Halftime — Rose-Hulman 33-25. 3-point shooting — R-H 8-24 (Haslag 0-1, Gerken 2-4, Weatherford 1-3, Strickland 1-3, Gissentanner 0-3, Dodd 0-1, Knotts 2-6, Martin 2-3), H 8-21 (Rieger 1-2, Bass 1-2, Nowicki 3-4, James 2-5, Kring 1-3, Hendricks 0-1, Steinhart 0-2, Gunter 0-2). Rebounds — R-H 35 (Strickland 8), H 30 (Case 6). Total fouls — R-H 15, H 18. Fouled out — none. Turnovers — R-H 7, H 8. Blocks — R-H 4 (Balsbaugh 3), H 5 (Gunter 4). Steals — R-H 1 (Gerken), H 3 (James, Kring, Hendricks).

Next — Rose-Hulman (19-8) will face Transylvania in the HCAC Tournament championship game at 2 p.m. today.

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