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No. 19 Blue Dragons Score Season High to Roll Past Indy

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By Hutchinson CC Sports Information

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (BlueDragonSports.com) – The No. 19-ranked Hutchinson Community College men’s basketball team had three players score 20-plus points in a season-high offensive output on Saturday at the Sports Arena.

BOX SCORE

The Blue Dragons shot 52.5 percent to extend their winning streak over the Pirates to 21 games as Hutchinson defeated Independence 111-82.

Hutchinson won its fourth game in a row and improved to 18-3 overall and 13-2 in the Jayhawk Conference. The Blue Dragons travel to Pratt on Wednesday. Independence lost its 21st-straight game and fell to 1-21 overall and 0-16 in the KJCCC.

Valentino Simon and Kernan Bundy scored 24 points each while Kamryn Thomashad 23 points to lead the Blue Dragons. That’s the first time three Blue Dragons scored 20 or more points in one game since January 15, 2022 against Garden City when Kaimen Lennox had 24 points, Angelo Stuart had 21 points and Kobe Campbell had 20 points.

Simon posted his sixth double-double of the season with season highs of 24 points and 14 rebounds.

Bundy scored a season-high 24 points off the bench with a 3-pointer and 7 of 7 from the free-throw line. Bundy had four three-point plays against the Pirates.

Thomas hit 9 of 12 total shots and went 3 of 3 from 3-point range to finish with 23 points. Thomas added four assists.

Kobe Smith also scored in double figures with 13 points on 4 of 8 shooting with two 3-pointers.

The Blue Dragons were 42 of 80 from the field, 9 of 22 from 3-point range and 18 of 19 from the free-throw line. Hutchinson had a season-high 28 assists. Russell Branch had a career-high seven assists and J.P. Ricks finished with seven assists.

The Dragons out-rebounded the Pirates 47-36.

Cory Curtis Jr. led Independence with 23 points. Keah Paljor and Billy Williams had 18 and 16 points, respectively.

Independence shot 41.7 percent (30 of 72), hitting 11 of 33 from 3-point range and 11 of 15 from the free-throw line. The Pirated committed 24 turnovers.

The Pirates jumped out to a 14-8 lead with 16:14 to play in the opening half after a Paljor 3-pointer. The Dragons cut the deficit to 18-17 after Simon scored after an offensive rebound with 13:32 to play to cap an 8-3 run.

Independence used an 8-0 run to build a 26-18 lead after a Trey Stanbeck 3-pointer with 11:22 to play. The Blue Dragons responded with a 15-3 run. The Dragons grabbed a 33-29 lead with 7:11 to play after a Bundy transition layup.

The Blue Dragons surged from that point, building a 48-37 lead with 1:37 to play in the half after a Thomas fastbreak bucket. Thomas scored again with 6 seconds left to give the Blue Dragons a 53-41 halftime lead.

Leading 59-47, the Blue Dragons scored six unanswered points to lead 65-47 after a Thomas free throw with 14:17 to play in the game. The Pirates chipped away and but back within 65-52, but the Blue Dragons scored 10-unanswered points, eight scored by Smith, for a 75-52 lead with 10:56 to play.

Hutchinson had runs of 9-0 and 9-2 in the final 10 minutes to complete the victory

The Dragons shot 55.3 percent with three 3-pointers in the final 20 minutes.

GAME NOTES – The Blue Dragons are now 57-23 all-time against Independence. … The Blue Dragons have scored three-straight 100-point games and 4 of the last 5 games against Independence. … This is win No. 1,912 in program history. … This was the Blue Dragons’ eighth game shooting 50 percent or better. … Landon Wagler had a career-high five rebounds. … Jojo Adeoye scored a career high six points and season-high-tying four rebounds.