The Anderson University men's basketball team nearly blew a 15-point second-half lead, but hung on to defeat Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference foe Bluffton University 70-67 on Saturday at Founders Hall in Bluffton, Ohio.
The victory was the 100th in his career for AU head coach Tom Slyder, who now has an overall record of 100-82 in seven seasons in Anderson.
"I'm just glad to get the win the way it played out," said Slyder. "I have three guys that have been a big part of a lot of those wins and that's the result of hard work. They bought into the vision that we set for them."
Andrew Bowman led the Ravens with 21 points and six rebounds, hitting 5-of-9 field goals and 11-of-12 free throws.
Brock Morrison had 16 points, eight rebounds, three assists, three steals and Phil Hogan added 13 points - all in the first half.
Jason Riley was also in double figures with 12 points, three rebounds, three assists and three steals, hitting 6-of-9 field goals.
"Bowman came up big," said Slyder. "This is the third game in a row that one of the big three didn't score and it was a team victory by playing defense."
AU shot 55 percent from the field, including 64 in the first half when it led 40-25. Bluffton finished at 42 percent shooting, including 33 in the first half. The Ravens won the battle of the boards 29-25, but the Beavers had a 9-5 edge on the offensive glass.
AU also had the lead in points in the paint (38-34) and steals (9-5) while Bluffton had the advantage in assists (12-11), turnovers (13-15), points off turnovers (18-16), and second chance points (15-6).
AU led by 15 early in the second half, but Bluffton used a 21-11 run to cut the lead to 55-54 with just under 10 minutes left in the game.
Neither team led by more than four points over the final 10 minutes and it was tied at 63 and 65 with three minutes remaining.
AU took the lead for good on a pair of free throws by Bowman, who scored the final seven Raven points in the game. The senior gave the visitors a 70-67 lead with another free throw in the final 10 seconds and blocked a 3-pointer on the previous Bluffton possession.
The Beavers' final 3-pointer to tie bounced off the rim, giving the Ravens their fourth straight conference victory.
"We continue to build in the conference and that is three wins in a row on the road," said Slyder.
AU (12-9, 8-6 HCAC) hosts Hanover on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing, and theology.