TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology relied on a balanced scoring attack and strong defensive to pick up a 70-49 men's basketball home victory over Bluffton University on Saturday afternoon at Hulbert Arena.
Michael Lake was the third Fightin' Engineer in double figures with 10 points on 4-4 from the free throw line and 2-2 from three-point range.
Craig McGee narrowly missed a triple-double for Rose-Hulman with 11 rebounds, 10 assists and nine points. Nick McGrail scored eight points, and Jacob Back added seven points in eight minutes of action off the bench.
The offense was enough for Rose-Hulman, as the defense held a team under 50 points for the second time this season. The Fightin' Engineers led 34-28 at the half, then held Bluffton to 29% from the field and just 21 points in the final half. Meanwhile, Rose-Hulman shot 52% from the field and hit 13-of-14 free throws down the stretch.
Rose-Hulman led 24-14 midway through the first half, but a Bluffton rally closed the margin to 30-28 late in the first half. Czarnecki and McGrail scored the final four points of the half to give Rose-Hulman a 34-28 lead at the break.
The Engineers opened the second half on a 13-4 run to take a 15-point lead at 47-32 on two free throws by Back at the 12:49 mark. Bluffton trimmed the margin to 13 points but could get no closer the rest of the way.
Rose-Hulman improved to 14-7 overall and 10-4 in HCAC play, while Bluffton dropped to 15-6 and 9-5. The Engineers are tied for second in the HCAC with Transylvania after Saturday's action, one game behind conference leader Hanover (11-3). Rose-Hulman hosts Franklin on Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m.