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Dragon women earn KJCCC road victory at Cowley


By Hutchinson CC Sports Information

ARKANSAS CITY, Kan. ( – The Hutchinson Community College women’s basketball team passed its first test as the No. 1-ranked team in the NJCAA after completing a big road test on Wednesday night.


Paced by five players scoring in double figures – which included Journey Armstead‘s third career double-double – the top-ranked Blue Dragons pulled away in the middle two quarters for an 81-62 KJCCC victory over the Cowley Tigers at Scott Auditorium.

The Blue Dragons extended the fourth-best start and fifth-longest winning streak in team history to 24-0 overall and 18-0 in the Jayhawk Conference. The Blue Dragons play host to No. 21 Butler at 2 p.m. on Saturday at the Sports Arena.

Kiki Smith led the Blue Dragons with 17 points, hitting 6 of 7 shots overall and 3 of 3 from 3-point range. Smith added five steals and two assists.

Akaysha Muggeridge tied a career high with 16 points. She sank a career-high four 3-pointers.

Armstead had her third career double-double with 14 points and a career-high-tying 10 assists. Armstead also had a single-game career-high six steals. Armstead posted the 21st all-time 10-assist game in Blue Dragon history. She also had 10 assists vs. the Washburn JV and Pratt in 2022-23.

Hailey Jackson finished with 12 points and eight rebounds. Bree Horyna had 12 points off the bench.

The Blue Dragons were 29 of 69 shooting overall (42.0 percent). The Dragons were 12 of 33 from 3-point range and 11 of 20 from the foul line. The Dragons were out-rebounded 41-28.

Hutchinson won the turnover battle with only eight turnovers to Cowley’s 29. The Blue Dragons owned a 38-8 scoring advantage in points off turnovers.

Ndack Mbenque had 11 points and a Blue Dragon opponent individual season-high 17 rebounds to lead the Tigers. Jaiden Smith had 14 points. Anna Przyszlak and Zuzanna Kormor had 12 points each.

Cowley finished shooting 24 of 49 shots (49.0 percent), hitting 5 of 18 from 3-point range and 9 of 13 from the free-throw line.

Despite shooting only 35.0 percent in the opening quarter, the Blue Dragons had three early 3-pointers to spark the offense. Armstead hit a 3-pointer for an early 7-2 lead. Monae Duffy hit a 3-pointer for a 10-5 lead with 6:09 left in the quarter. Horyna then hit a 3-pointer with 2:00 to play for a 15-12 Hutchinson lead. Duffy scored with 12 seconds to play for a four-point lead, but Cowley cut that lead to one when Jaiden Smith hit a 3-pointer just before the buzzer, which cut the Dragon lead to 19-18 after one quarter.

The Blue Dragons started the second quarter on a 13-2 run, holding Cowley without a field goal for the first 3 minutes, 33 seconds of the quarter. Kiki Smith‘s 3-pointer capped that run for a 32-20 lead with 6:37 to play in the quarter. The Dragons then went scoreless for 4 minutes, 11 seconds and Cowley cut the Dragon lead to 32-27 with 3:31 to play after a Destiny Yates’ 3-pointer. Hutchinson turned the tables on Cowley, holding the Tigers scoreless for the remainder of the quarter. Horyna and Smith hit jumpers to give the Dragons a 36-27 halftime lead.

The Dragons outscored Cowley 25-16 in the third quarter. Leading 45-34, Jackson scored off a Cowley turnover, which started 10-2 Hutchinson run. All five Dragon field goals in that run came from Tiger turnovers. Peyton Mosley capped the run with a jumper at the 1:44 mark of the quarter for a 56-36 lead. Hutchinson led 61-43 after three quarters.

Hutchinson maintained its comfortable lead through the final quarter. Cowley drew as close as 17 points twice in the final 10 minutes.

GAME NOTES – The Blue Dragons completed the season sweep of Cowley and now leads the overall series 33-24, including 9-12 in Arkansas City. … This was all-time program win No. 1,099. … This was the 12th game with 20 or more assists. … The Dragons had a season-low 28 rebounds. … The Dragons are 4-0 when out-rebounded in a game and 3-0 when out-shot in a game this season. … The Dragons are 8-0 in true road games this season.