No. 1 Blue Dragons To Battle Cancer, Congs On Saturday At The Arena

Posted 1 year ago

By Glen Grunwald

mbb020113With a two-game lead in the Jayhawk Conference Western Division at the halfway point of the conference season, the No. 1-ranked Hutchinson Community College men’s basketball team begins the second half of league play with a challenge from Dodge City on Saturday at the Sports Arena.

Saturday’s second-annual Pink-Out Game is set for 7:30 p.m. All proceeds from money raised to fight cancer will go to the Cancer Council of Reno County.

The game will be broadcast live on Blue Dragon flagship station KHUT-FM (102.9) and on sister station KWBW-AM (1450) beginning at 7:20 p.m. The Blue Dragon Sports Network will provide a live videostream and audio-only stream beginning at 7:20 p.m.

Since becoming the NJCAA’s No. 1-ranked team, along with the HCC women, the Blue Dragons (22-0, 8-0 Jayhawk West) have averaged three home crowds of nearly 3,900 fans per game.

Approximately 3,800 saw HCC rally from 15 points down to defeat Seward County 87-74 on Wednesday to take a two-game lead in the Jayhawk West over the entire field.

The expected large crowd on Saturday will see a Dodge City team that pushed the Blue Dragons in the conference opener on Jan. 5 at United Wireless Arena in Dodge City. The Blue Dragons had the final points of regulation to force overtime and then went on to defeat the Conquistadors 89-85.

The Conquistadors (12-10, 4-4) come in with a lot of confidence after earning a 63-54 road victory on Wednesday without the Jayhawk West’s leading scorer, Vic Adams.

Of all the West teams, Dodge City has had the most success against HCC in the Sports Arena in recent years, winning the last two and 3 of the 4 four games at the Arena.

GAME 23 – No. 1 Hutchinson (22-0, 8-0) vs. Dodge City (12-10, 4-4)
Date: Saturday, February 2, 2013
Tipoff: 7:30 p.m.
Site: Hutchinson Sports Arena, Hutchinson, KS (Capacity: 7,000)
Radio: KHUT-FM (102.9), KWBW-AM (1450) – Glen Grunwald (PBP), Rusty Hilst (Analyst), 7:20 p.m.
Free Internet Video and Audio:  www.bluedragonsports.com, 7:20 p.m.
Twitter: @bluedragonsport
Tickets: $7 reserved; $5 general admission
Promotion: 2nd Annual Pink-Out Night. Receive a Pink T-Shirt for a minimum $5 donation to help the Blue Dragons fight cancer.

Blue Dragons No. 2 in NJCAA in all-time wins
With their 76-64 victory over Mesa Community College on Nov. 3, the Blue Dragons reached 1,600 wins in their illustrious history.

The Blue Dragons are 1,619-556, a winning percentage of .744 in their 81st season of men’s basketball.

The Blue Dragons trail only Southeastern Iowa in all-time wins. Southeastern Iowa.

HCC played its 2,100th game on Dec. 4, 2010 vs. Harcum College.

With their 76-69 victory over Seward County on Jan. 3, 2010, the Blue Dragons moved past Moberly Area Community College for second place on the NJCAA all-time wins list.

With a 79-53 victory over Labette on Nov. 1, 2008, the Blue Dragons became only the third NJCAA program to post 1,500 victories. Win No. 1,400 came on Feb. 9, 2004 at Butler.

Blue Dragons in national poll
For the second time in three seasons, the Blue Dragons have reached the No. 1 spot in the NJCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Poll. The Blue Dragons have maintained that top spot for three-straight weeks.

Before Jan. 15, the last time HCC was ranked No. 1 was in 2010-11. That team held the top spot for two weeks.

Before that, the last time that Hutchinson was ranked No. 1 in a regular season poll was on Jan. 7, 1992. The Blue Dragons – the starting point guard on that team was current HCC women’s coach John Ontjes – started that season 15-0 and spent one week in the nation’s top spot before getting bumped off. That team finished 22-7 and was Region VI runner-up.

The latest No. 1 national ranking is only the fourth since 1975 for the Blue Dragon men. The 1974-75 Blue Dragons, coached by Dick Gisel, started their season 24-0. That Blue Dragon team finished 32-3, won the Jayhawk West and Region VI crowns and finished eighth in the 1975 NJCAA Tournament.

HCC has now been ranked in 11 consecutive NJCAA polls, dating back to last season.

22-0 start is third best in Blue Dragon history
Fast starts under the Steve Eck watch have been nothing new in his four seasons with the Blue Dragons.

This season’s 22-0 start is the third best in team history, surpassing the 2010-11 Blue Dragons. Both teams reached No. 1 in the NJCAA Rankings.

In Eck’s four seasons at Hutchinson, the Blue Dragons have gone 12-2, 14-0, 13-1 and 14-0 in non-conference play.

The best start to a season came in 1974-75, a 24-0 start to a season.

Current winning streak is fourth longest in history
Hutchinson’s current 22-game winning streak is the fourth-longest in the program’s 83-year history.

The current streak surpasses the 1993-94 Blue Dragons at No. 4. The 2012-13 Blue Dragons now try to match the 1987-88 national champion Blue Dragons for the third-longest winning streak in team history. That team won 23 straight games during its run to the NJCAA championship.

The Blue Dragons have had 33 winning streaks of 10 or more games in program history and five of 20 or more. The longest win streak in HCC history is 24 games, which was done twice in 1967-68 (coached by Gene Keady) and 1974-75 (coached by Dick Gisel).

About the 2012-13 Blue Dragons
+ The Blue Dragons average 83.2 points per game offensively. HCC is shooting 48.4 percent overall and has shot 50 percent or better 10 times this season. The Dragons are shooting 32.2 percent from 3-point range and is 67.8 percent from the foul line. The Blue Dragons have fallen to second in the Jayhawk West in free-throw shooting. HCC ranks second in scoring offense and leads the league in field-goal percentage.

+ Defensively, the Blue Dragons rank seventh in scoring defense at 67.9 points per game. Opponents are shooting 38.6 percent overall and 26.8 percent from 3-point range. The Dragons are second in 3-point defense and third in field-goal defense.

+ The Blue Dragons have been particularly strong defensively over the last four games, holding two opponents to less than 30-percent shooting. Over the last four games, the Dragons are allowing 63.0 points per game. Opponents are shooting 33.8 percent overall and just 17.7 percent from 3-point range.

+ Through eight Jayhawk West games, HCC is averaging 79.9 points, shooting 47.2 percent overall. The Blue Dragons haven’t utilized the 3-point shot as much in conference play. Shooting 29.0 percent, the Dragons are just 20 of 69 from distance in league play. Defensively, HCC is allowing 67.4 points, 37.6 percent field-goal shooting and 23.5 percent from 3-point range.

+ Freshman guard Kadeem Allen has posted four 20-point games in conference play. Overall, he is fourth in the Jayhawk West in scoring at 17.3 points per game. He has scored in double figures in 19 of 20 games played this season, averaging 19.9 points per game in Jayhawk West games. Allen is shooting 44.0 percent, 33.5 percent from 3-point range and 70.6 percent from the foul line. Allen also has team highs of 72 assists and 50 steals. Allen ranks fourth in the KJCCC West in steals and seventh in assists.

+ Coming off his third double-double of the season one week ago vs. Cloud County, sophomore guard A.J. Spencer is second in scoring at 15.1 points per game, which is ninth in the Jayhawk West. Spencer ranks fourth in field-goal percentage at 58.8 percent, while leading the West at the free-throw line (83.5 percent). Spencer is averaging 17.0 points in conference play, shooting 58.8 percent. The sophomore is averaging 6.2 rebounds per game.

+ Sophomore forward Alex Davis averages 13.0 points per game with a team-high 7.4 rebounds per game. Davis is 10th in the Jayhawk West in scoring and seventh in rebounding. Davis is shooting 48.3 percent from the field and 62.2 percent from the foul line. He has gone to the line 143 times this season, second-most in the league.  Davis leads the Jayhawk West lead in blocks at 2.55 rejections per game.

+ HCC go the services of sophomore point guard D’Von Campbell back on Wednesday against Seward County. Campbell missed six games because of injuries. The UTEP transfer had some rust, but totaled 11 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals. Campbell averages 11.4 point and 3.8 assists, which is eighth in the Jayhawk West.

+ Freshman Tafari Whittingham has missed the last two games because of injuries.  Whittingham, who started four of the games for the injured Campbell, was averaging 9.3 points, shooting 52.1 percent.

+ The Blue Dragon bench is averaging 19.7 points for the season, but that number has dropped to 14.0 points in conference play. Sophomore Dre Henley is the leading scorer off the bench. Henley has had games of 18 and 10 points in his last two games and is averaging 6.7 points, shooting 53.8 percent from the floor. He had a career-high six assists on Saturday vs. Cloud County and had a season-high seven rebounds vs. Seward County.

+ The Blue Dragons have out-rebounded 11 of 22 opponents this season. HCC is plus 2.0 in rebounding advantage, pulling down 41.5 boards per game. The Blue Dragons are averaging 13.7 offensive rebounds per game after a season-high 24 offensive boards on Wednesday vs. Seward County. HCC is a plus-2.4 rebounding in conference play, pulling down 42.4 rebounds.

+ Over the last four games, HCC has out-rebounded each opponent by an average of 7.0 per game. HCC has 194 total rebounds over that span of games.

+ The Blue Dragons average 18.2 assists per game and 9.4 steals.

+ Hutchinson averages 15.9 turnovers and forcing opponents into 19.3 turnovers per game. The Blue Dragons had a season-low eight turnovers vs. Barton on Jan. 16.

+ HCC is 17-0 at the Sports Arena this season, averaging 83.8 points per game.

+ HCC is 5-0 on the road this season, averaging 81.4 points per game.

Scouting Dodge City
+ The Conquistadors feature the Jayhawk West’s top scorer in Vic Adams, who is averaging 20.0 points per game. He leads the league in made 3-pointers with 37 and he shoots 33.5 percent from behind the arc, which is ninth in the West. Adams is tied for ninth in free-throw percentage at 71.6 percent. Adams did not play in Wednesday’s road victory at Butler. According to a published report in the Dodge City Globe, Adams was injured for that game and did not play.

+ Under first-year head coach Kyle Campbell, the Conquistadors were 8-6 during the non-conference season. Quality wins this season for Dodge City are against Clarendon College, Seminole State and an overtime victory over Missouri State-West Plains. The Conquistadors come into Saturday’s game on their first conference winning streak, defeating both Garden City and Butler.

+ Dodge City ranks seventh in the Jayhawk West in scoring offense at 70.5 points per game. The Conqs are fourth in field-goal percentage at 43.6 percent. DCCC shoots 64.2 percent from the foul line, shooting at a 67-percent clip during conference play.

+ Dodge City ranks seventh of nine teams in the Jayhawk West in 3-point percentage at 31.2 percent. But the Conquistadors have hit the third-most treys in the league with 128. The Conquistadors are at 32.3 percent with 40 made 3-pointers in conference play.

+ Defensively, Dodge City allows 66.7 points per game, which is seventh in the league. Opponents are shooting 43.8 percent overall and 30.8 percent from 3-point range.

+ Delvon Rencher averages 11.3 points per game. He also averages a team-high 7.0 rebounds per contest, which ranks seventh in the Jayhawk West.

+ Aaron Tate is third on the team in scoring at 9.9 points per game. Tate led the Jayhawk West in field-goal percentage entering conference play, but has slipped to ninth at 54.1 percent from the floor. Tate also averages 6.8 rebounds per game.

+ Dodge City is pulling down 34.0 rebounds per game, while allowing 36.0 boards per game.

+ DCCC is averaging 12.9 assists per game. Greg Travis has a team-high 66 assists, while Adams is second with 56.

+ The Conqs force 17.0 turnovers, while giving it up 14.4 miscues per game. DCCC averages 8.9 steals and 1.3 blocked shots.

+ The Conquistadors are 8-2 at home this season, 3-5 on the road and 1-3 in neutral court games.

Series history against Dodge City
This will be the 170th meeting between Hutchinson and Dodge City in a series that began in 1935.

Dodge City is one of four opponents that the Blue Dragons have at least 100 victories against. HCC is 108-61 overall against the Conquistadors. The 108 victories are the fourth most against any opponent.

HCC is 52-22 in games played in Hutchinson and 42-17 in games played at the Sports Arena. Dodge City has won 4 of the last 5 games played at the Sports Arena. HCC is 43-32 at Dodge City and 9-6 in Region VI meetings with the Conquistadors.

Hutchinson defeated Dodge City 89-85 in overtime in the season’s first meeting on Jan. 5 at Dodge City.

(HCC Sports Information

FULL GAME NOTES (PDF format)