BLUE DRAGON MEN'S BASKETBALL
No. 22 Hutchinson (19-5, 10-5) at Garden City (9-15, 4-11)
When: Saturday, February 9, 2019
Hutchinson CC Sports Information
The first time Hutchinson Community College men's basketball team played Garden City, the Broncbusters stunned the then-No. 9-ranked Blue Dragon with a last minute-victory at the Sports Arena.
Now the 22nd-ranked Blue Dragons would like to return the favor in Saturday's rematch with the Busters at Conestoga Arena in Garden City.
Game time on Saturday at Conestoga Arena in Garden City is 4 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on Blue Dragon flagship station KHUT-FM (102.9) and on sister stations KWBW-AM/FM (1450/98.5) at 3:50 p.m. with Rusty Hilst (play by play) and Daren Dunn (analysis) calling the action.
Garden City upset the Blue Dragons 70-69 on January 14. Russhard Cruickshank hit a pair of free throws with 12.2 second left to give the Busters a one-point lead. The Blue Dragons couldn't come up with the answer in their first home loss of the season. That loss also ended a 10-game winning streak against the Busters.
Garden City held Hutch to 28 point in the first half and out-rebounded the Blue Dragons 40 to a season-low 30. The Blue Dragons had a tough time stopping Garden City forward Jamir Thomas, who scored 22 points on 8 of 10 shooting. D.J. Mitchell led five Dragons in double figures with 17 points.
A Blue Dragon victory on Saturday would be historic.
Already the NJCAA leader in all-time men's basketball victories, a win on Saturday would mean Hutchinson will reach 1,800 wins. Going into play on Saturday, Vincennes University is second with 1,771 wins.
Hutchinson rebounded nicely from the Seward County loss with a much-improved defensive effort as well as a solid offensive performance in an 81-68 win over Northwest Tech.
Defensively, the Blue Dragons held Tech to 27 points on 34 percent shooting to build a 36-27 lead at halftime. Offensively, the Dragons shot 50 percent or better for the fourth-straight game and got a team-high 19 points and nine rebounds from James Rojas. Tyler Brown hit 5 of 6 3-pointers for a career-best 17 points. The Dragons were 8 of 12 from 3-point range and dished out 19 assists on 30 makes against the Mavericks.
The Broncbusters come in on a three-game losing streak and 3-7 in their last 10 games.
Garden City closes out a four-game stretch against the top four teams in the Jayhawk West. The Busters have lost to Colby, 73-54; Barton, 84-77; and Seward County, 75-74 in a game they led for most of the contest.
The Broncbusters are still the sixth-best scoring defense in the Jayhawk West, allowing 72.9 points per game.
Saturday will be the 184th all-time meeting between Hutchinson and Garden City. The Blue Dragons own a 135-48 record over the Broncbusters. The 135 wins vs. Garden City are the second-most wins against a single opponent in Blue Dragon history.
The Dragons have won four in a row over the Busters in Garden City. The last Garden win on its home floor was Feb. 10, 2014. Hutchinson hasn't been swept in a season series with Garden City since 2005.