Cougars defeat Garden City to get first conference win of season

In what could be considered an early conference season ‘must win’, the Barton Community College men’s basketball team picked up a much needed home conference win Wednesday night at the Barton Gym.  The Cougars shot 50% for the game and had five players score in double figures as they defeated Garden City Community College 82-72 to improve to 1-2 in conference and 15-2 overall.  With the loss Garden City drops to 13-4 overall and 1-2 in conference play.  The No. 15 ranked Cougars will travel to El Dorado this Saturday to take on Butler Community College for a 7:30 p.m. Jayhawk West matchup.  The Grizzlies, who were also seeking their first conference win last night, picked up a big road victory by defeating No. 12 Hutchinson 62-61.

Despite being shorthanded, the Cougars’ blend of sophomore leadership and rising freshman output helped Barton build a fourteen point first half lead to take a 46-39 advantage to the break. Sophomore Darius Hill scored 12 of his 17 points in the first half and freshman Kurt Walker knocked down 2-of-2 three pointers as they gave the Cougars an 18-6 advantage off the bench in the first half.

The two teams started off slow as nearly two minutes would tick off the clock before Garden broke into the scoring column.  After falling behind by four the Cougars would finally get on the scoreboard two and a half minutes into the game as they scored seven unanswered to lead 7-4. Barton would extend the lead to five twice before Garden would tie it up and take the lead with 10:41 to play. 

The Cougar defense forced six Garden City turnovers in the next eight minutes and Hill scored 10 of his first half points as Barton built a fourteen point advantage with 2:48 to play.  After a Chancy Johnson three-pointer and Geron Johnson jumper cut the Barton lead to nine, Walker knocked down his second first half trey to stop the Garden City run as Barton held on to take a 46-39 lead into halftime.

The teams combined for 19 turnovers and 5-of-18 shooting from three-point territory in the first half.  Overall Barton shot 50% from the field while Garden City shot 46.7%.

Garden would cut the Barton lead to three in the second half’s opening four minutes before freshmen Andell Cumberbatch and Walker knocked down back-to-back treys to extend the lead back to nine.  Garden would get as close as three twice in the next seven minutes until the Cougars started to pull away again utilizing on a 7-0 run to extend the lead back to ten. Hill made 3-of-4 free throws to go along with a steal and lay up by freshman Algie Key capped by a pair of free throws by sophomore Carl Wallace completed the run to put Barton up 75-65 with 6:37 to play.

After seeing its lead dwindle to seven in the next two minutes, a Hill basketball gave the Cougars a nine point advantage as the two teams went scoreless for the next two plus minutes.  Barton would then connect on 5-of-6 free throws in the closing two minutes to secure the victory.

Barton played the game without its second leading scorer and leading team rebounder Dwayne Brunson, as well as, sophomore Jalen Boyd.  Brunson was serving a one-game suspension resulting from a game disqualification after a verbal altercation with Dodge City’s James Milton last Saturday night in Dodge City.  Boyd, from Topeka, KS, left the team to return home citing personal reasons but is continuing his education through Barton via online classes.

The Cougars had five players in double-digit scoring led by freshman Algie Key with 21 points.  Hill had 17 points to go along with his team leading 8 rebounds, while Wallace scored 15, Cumberbatch with 12, and Walker with 11.  Wallace had an all-around solid performance as he added six rebounds, seven assists, one block, and five steals.

Leading the Broncbusters in scoring was Geron Johnson with 19 points.  Jarwand Rheubottom scored 13 while Chancy Williams contributed 11.

The Cougars shot 50% from the field on 18-of-36 shots and had five blocks to go along with ten steals.  Garden City shot 40.6% on 14-of-30 shots but connected on only 6-of-25 three-point shots to finish at 24% from long distance.


Released:  January 12, 2012

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