DCCC men beats rival Garden City

DODGE CITY - Saturday’s rematch between the Dodge City Community College and Garden City Community College men’s basketball teams was decided in the final two minutes of the game.

Garden City’s Naradain James knocked down a 3-pointer with 2:19 to play which gave the Broncbusters a 66-65 lead but over the final 2 minutes, Dodge City outscored its Jayhawk Conference rivals 8-2 to sweep the regular season series with a 73-68 win.

The Conquistadors took advantage of two Garden City turnovers in the final minute of the game. The second turnover came with 23 seconds left when sophomore guard Trevon Evans stripped Garden City’s Ben Howze. Instead of racing to the basket for a layup, Evan began to move the ball around which chipped 20 seconds off of the game clock before the Broncbusters finally fouled Dodge City guard Harris Brown to stop the clock.

The lead changed hands 14 times on Saturday which included 10 times in which the score was tied.

"It was a good game," Garden City head coach Brady Trenkle said. "Dodge hits shots when they needed to, we hit some big buckets but we turned it over when you shouldn’t have and they didn’t. They had one key turnover but that’s one to our three or four. Big difference."

After James’ 3-pointer it was freshman guard, and Dodge City native, Dayton McGroarty who put the Conqs back on the front foot with a 3-point play after he beat two Busters for an offensive rebound that he laid in while getting fouled.

"(Harris Brown) told me that he was going to knock it down and I said well if you don’t, I’m going to (rebound) and I did," McGroarty said. "The environment was just crazy. It was hard not to make plays when it felt like our entire school was here cheering us on."

Garden City sophomore guard Josh Fleming tied the game one final time with a jump shot with 1:35 to play but the Conqs answered with a 3-pointer from Evans.

"We didn’t force anything, we got exactly what we wanted," Dodge City head coach Kyle Campbell said. "We didn’t hit (a shot) but we got an offensive rebound and then we came down and (Evans) just made a big play. That’s what we recruited him here to do. I’m just happy for the guys. We stayed patient, we didn’t go take wild shots and we guarded in the last 2 minutes."

Both teams were without key players on Saturday as Garden City missed sophomore Victor Dukes, the team’s leading scorer and rebounder, while Dodge City was without forwards Dreon Lewis and Brandon Miller.

Because of the absences of the Conqs’ big men, Dodge City played small for most of the afternoon.

"(Dodge City) is different when they have their size, we needed them big because I like to play big too," Trenkle said. "Now you’re putting the ball more in Evan’s hands and Brown’s hands. When it’s more in your guards hands, it can effect the outcome of the game like it did tonight."

Brown led all scorers with 27 points, 16 of which came in the first half and Evans tallied 15. Sophomore forward Josh Boutte finished with a game-high 14 rebounds to go with his 14 points for Dodge City.

James scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Garden City while Aaron Ray added 16 points and Fleming scored 15.

Saturday’s win helped Dodge City create a two-game gap between third and fourth place in the Jayhawk Conference standings. The Conqs sit in third place while the Busters are in a three-way tie for third place. Just one game separates fourth and eighth place in the conference standings going into the final seven-game stretch.

"These next three games are huge for us because we’re all sitting right there," Campbell said. "We can finish second or we can finished eighth and that’s a big difference."

The Conqs (16-7, 13-6) will host Butler on Wednesday while the Busters (15-8, 11-8) host No. 6 Hutchinson in their midweek matchup.

Dodge City - 35 38 - 73

Garden City - 35 33 - 68

Dodge City (16-7, 13-6) - Noskowiak 0-3 0-0 0, Boutte 7-14 0-0 14, Brown 10-20 2-2 27, Evans 6-9 2-2 15, Jones 1-9 1-2 4, Ware 1-6 1-3 3, Williams 0-0 1-2 1, McGroarty 3-5 3-3 9, Lebegue 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 28-69 9-11 73.

Garden City (15-8, 11-8) - Gilbert 0-5 0-0 0, James 7-14 3-4 18, Fleming 6-10 0-0 15, Ray 5-9 6-8 16, Howze 4-11 1-1 9, Stancil 1-3 0-0 3, Anei 0-0 0-0 0, Kelly 0-1 0-0 0, Agyeman-Budu 3-6 1-2 7. 26-59 11-15 68.