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Late Surge Seals Dragon Win over Colby


By Hutchinson CC Sports Information


HUTCHINSON, Kan. – The No. 22-ranked Hutchinson Community College men’s basketball team survived a tough offensive first half, fought its way back into the game and Sunday’s game with Colby open in the final 2 minutes, 28 seconds to earn a Jayhawk Conference victory.

Leading by one point with 2:28 to play, the Blue Dragons outscored Colby 13-3 in the final 2:28 to earn a 92-81 victory over Colby at the Sports Arena.

The Blue Dragons won their third game in a row and improved to 7-1 overall and 2-0 in the KJCCC. The Dragons travel to Independence on Wednesday. Colby fell to 4-5 overall and 0-3 in conference play.

Hutchinson shot just 38.5 percent in the first half and trailed 40-38 at halftime, their second halftime deficit of the season. Colby’s largest lead of the opening half was nine points at 24-15 with 8:48 to play in the opening half.

The Blue Dragons turned their offensive fortunes around in the second half, shooting 61.3 percent (19 of 31) with six 3-point goals. JP. Ricks and Kamryn Thomas had 13 points each and Dallas Whitney scored 10 points in the second-half surge.

Leading 79-78 with 2:28 to play in regulation, Ricks started the late scoring explosion with a 12-foot jumper for a three-point lead. The lead quickly grew to eight after Whitney hit a 3-pointer, and then after a Ricks’ steal, he had a transition dunk to give the Dragons an 86-79 lead with 1:13 remaining.

The Dragons scored 11 unanswered points, which was snapped by Maxence Massadila’s 3-pointer with 18 seconds left. Valentino Simon capped the late Dragon run with two free throws for a 92-81 lead with 17 seconds to play in the game.

Ricks led the Blue Dragons with a career-high 18 points and tied a career best with three 3-point goals. Ricks added five assists and a pair of steals.

Thomas scored 17 points, going 5 of 7 from the floor in the second half. He had two 3-point goals.

Whitney finished with 13 points, seven rebounds and a career-high-tying six assists off the bench.

Simon had 12 points and seven rebounds. Dre Weathers had 12 points and six rebounds. Zoe Holman finished with nine points and six assists.

The Blue Dragons finished shooting 48.6 percent (34 of 70) for the game, sinking 10 of 28 3-point attempts and 14 of 18 from the free-throw line. The Dragons out-rebounded Colby 40-38 and Hutchinson had just 11 turnovers to Colby’s 14.

Colby’s Massadila led all scorers with 28 points on 5 of 8 shooting from the 3-point line. Colby finished shooting 47.8 percent for the game (32 of 67), hitting 9 of 30 from distance and 8 of 11 from the foul line.

Colby had the lead in the game for 22:29, to Hutchinson’s 13:22. There were eight lead changes and six ties in the game.

GAME NOTES – This was all-time win No. 1,901 for the Blue Dragons. … The Blue Dragons are now 56-5 all-time vs. Colby, including 30-2 at the Sports Arena. The Dragons have won the last six games in the series. … The Blue Dragons are 1-1 when trailing at halftime this season. … Colby’s nine 3-pointers were an opponent season high. … Maxence Massadila’s 28 points were an opponent season-high against the Dragons this season.