The regular season in now in the books. It was one of ups and downs for the Barton women’s basketball team.
The finale came Saturday the Sports Arena in Hutchinson where the Cougars lost their final game of the regular season in an 81-59 loss to No. 14 Hutchinson.
The Cougars were able slow down the Hutch guards and Hutchinson in general during the opening half, but a big run to start the third period spelled doom for the Cougars.
Barton falls to 6-13 in the Jayhawk Conference, which will place them 10th. The Cougars will get the No. 11 seed in the upcoming Region VI post-season. Barton is 14-16 overall. Hutchinson is looking to carry the top seed into the post-season with a 15-3 mark. The Blue Dragons are 25-3 overall.
Barton will be on the road in the opening round at either Coffeyville, Butler, or Cloud.
Saturday at the Sports Arena, the Cougars limited Hutch to just 13 second quarter points but still trailed at half, 33-22. The Blue Dragons came out and scored the game’s first eight points on the second half for a 41-22 lead.
That started a 34-point quarter for the Blue Dragons – one more than Hutch scored the entire first half. Barton’s 22 points that quarter equaled its first half total but the Cougars fell behind 67-44 heading into the final 10 minutes.
Barton was able to force the guard combo of Inja Butina and Taylor Stahly into 10 turnovers. That was a good for the Cougars. But Stahly still scored 17 points on the strength of 3-of-5 shooting from 3-point land.
The biggest difference in the game came from the two post players for the Blue Dragon. Hutch’ Kirea Rogers and Mandy Madden took advantage of the height-challenged Cougars by combining for 33 points and 23 rebounds. Rogers went for 20 and 13 to lead the way.
Barton put three players in double figures led by Kylee Harris with 15. Regan Unruh added 13 and Dominique Baker 12. The Cougars were out-rebounded by a 42-23 margin. Barton did force Hutchinson in to 23 turnovers and scored 18 points off those turnovers.
Barton will find out its opening round foe Tuesday.