Ranked No. 25 in the latest NJCAA poll, Barton Community College’s men’s basketball team has a rematch with Garden City on Saturday night, starting at 7:30 at Kirkman Activity Center.
The last time these two teams met, back on Jan. 9 at Garden City, the Broncbusters upset then-No. 9-ranked Barton 66-47.
The two teams had to separated by uniformed police officers when a near-melee broke out after postgame handshakes.
The Cougars are 20-4 overall, 7-3 in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference Western Division and seeking some momentum as they prepare for three crucial games in a five-day stretch. Barton travels to El Dorado to take on Butler on Monday night, and then entertains top-ranked and unbeaten Hutchinson this coming Wednesday night.
Garden City (10-14, 2-8), which is tied for the West basement with Colby (2-8), has lost six of its last seven games since knocking off the Cougars.
At Dodge City two days ago, Barton notched head coach Craig Fletchall another 20-win season with a 73-53 victory over the Conquistadors.
Sophomore guard Al Key scored a game-high 30 points, the Cougars combined for 6-for-12 on 3-pointers and they went on a 26-2 second-half run during a nine-minute stretch to turn the game into a runaway.
Lady Cougars vs.
(5:30 p.m., Saturday)
Barton’s women (12-11, 2-8) will be taking on a Garden City team that has achieved a feat no other team has accomplished this season: beat top-ranked Hutchinson.
The unranked Lady Busters (21-3, 7-3) shocked Hutchinson 64-62 on Wednesday night in Garden City, dropping the previously unbeaten Lady Blue Dragons to 23-1, 9-1.
Garden City, currently tied for third place in the West with Seward (7-3), was coming off a 73-46 road loss to Butler in El Dorado last Saturday night.
Post player Tamara Jones leads the Lady Busters, averaging almost a double-double with 20.2 points and 9.7 rebounds.
Against Hutch, Jones had 18 points and 10 rebounds. She was joined in double figures by Deni Jacobs, who totaled 17 points and eight rebounds, and point guard Mikell Chinn, who had 11 points and eight assists.
Barton, which has fallen into a tie with Dodge City for seventh place in the West, has lost four straight games, including the last two going down to the wire.
The Lady Cougars lost to Seward 65-63 at home last Saturday night, and then fell 71-68 at Dodge City on Wednesday night.
Sophomore guard Erin Copeland leads Barton with a 10.6 points-per-game scoring average, including 43.1 percent accuracy on 3-pointers (31 for 72), and freshman forward Ashton Bruner is averaging 9.9 points and leads the Lady Cougars with a 7.6 rebounding average.
Sophomore guard Blair Bloomfield is averaging 9.9 points and 5.1 rebounds, and sophomore post player Ta’Kerra Williams is averaging 7.3 points, along with a 6.2 rebounding clip. Sophomore shooting guard Taschell Phillips is also averaging 7.3 points.