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Cougars on short end of another close Jayhawk battle
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PHOTO credit to Mike Courson, Barton Sports Information Dequandre Dentmond goes up over Dodge Citys Jamie Rutherford during action at the Barton Gym Saturday on Hall of Fame night. Dentmond and Cougars came up short in another close contest, losing 74-71. Barton will travel to Colby Wednesday.

The past two games it was the Barton’s men’s basketball team that left the floor following close wins. Wins, in fact, that came down to the final seconds before the Cougars scored the winning basket.
In both of those games it was Dequandre Dentmond that played hero with a last-second basket. Saturday in front of a Hall of Fame game crowd, Barton round itself on the short end of a tight Jayhawk Conference game.
Dodge City came to Barton and left with a 74-71 win at the Barton Gym that came down to another last-season shot. The loss dropped Barton below Dodge City in the conference standings.
“Dodge City is a very talented team,” Coach Craig Fletchall said. “But we didn’t do the things we needed to do. We had our chances. Especially in the first half. We felt like we should have been up by double figures and we were only up one.”
Barton is now 9-6 in the Jayhawk, sitting in fifth place. The Cougars are 17-9 overall. Dodge is 9-5 in fourth and 18-7 overall. Hutchinson and Neosho County are both 12-3 atop the standings with Pratt 10-4 and in third.
Barton led most of the game Saturday but never were able to get separation on Dodge City.
Dentmond gave the Cougars a 25-23 lead and started a 7-0 run capped by a Tyler Windholz trey for a 30-23 lead with five minutes left in the half. Barton would hold the lead the next 22 minutes.
But Barton never got it above eight and most of the time bounced between two and six points.
Dodge caught the Cougars at 63-all on a Jonathan Joseph dunk with five minutes left in the game. Lorenzo Dillard gave the Conquistadors their first lead since the first half on a pair of free throws with two minutes left for a 65-63 advantage.
Barton would tie it at 65-all on a jumper by Derek Dorn and again at 67-all on Dorn free throws setting a big Dodge City possession with 1:30 to play. Dorn was helped by a lane violation on his second free throw, which he missed. He made them pay by knocking down the extra toss.
It was then Jeremy Treaudo provided the biggest shot of the game. Treaduo knocked down a 3-pointer with five left on the shot clock and one minute to play in the game for a 70-67 lead.
The Cougars made the plays in the final minute but it was enough to make up those three points. Barton cut it to 70-69 when Ezekiel Charles put back his own miss with 36 seconds to play. After a pair of Dodge free throws, Antony Smith put in a baby hook on the right block to make it 72-71 with 8.6 seconds left.
The Cougars nearly had the ball back on the Conqs inbounds pass as the ball bounced off Dodge City’s Mario Pounds’ knee.
But Windholz was whistled for a foul and Ponds made both free throws for a 74-71 lead. Barton had one last chance to tie and it came to Dentmond, the last-second hero of the last two games.
Dentmond got a good look from the left wing but his 3-pointer hit off the front rim at the buzzer and Dodge City had its win. It also gave the Conquistadors a season-sweep for tie-breaker purpose.
Smith led three Cougars in double figures with 21 points. Charles added 15 and Dorn 14 in the loss. Charles also had eight rebounds and five assists.
Joseph finished with 17 points to lead Dodge followed by Dillard and Josh Boutle with 12. Boutle led all players with 11 rebounds and Dillard with 10 assists.
Barton will head back to the road for the next two games starting Wednesday at Colby. Colby won at Barton earlier this year, 66-58. The Cougars are 5-2 on the road in the conference this season and just 4-4 on their home floor.
“It’s time to play now,” Coach Fletchall said. “We have two weeks left. The kids have to find it in themselves to really buckle down and finish strong. How much does this mean to them? We can still have a great season.”