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January 8, 2013BUSY EARLY STRETCH CONCLUDES FOR HCC MEN WITH ROAD TRIP TO RIVAL BUTLER
The Hutchinson Community College men's basketball team concludes a stretch of three games in five days to open the 2013 Jayhawk Conference Western Division season with a road trip to its oldest rival on Wednesday night.
Now ranked No. 2 in the NJCAA Men's Division I poll, the Blue Dragons travel to Butler for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff at Butler's Power Plant.
The game can be heard on Blue Dragon Flagship Station KHUT-FM (102.9) and sister station KWBW-AM (1450) beginning at 7:20 p.m. The game can also be seen and heard on the internet on the blue Dragon Sports Network (bluedragonsports.com).
The first two games in Jayhawk West play haven't been easy for Hutchinson. The Blue Dragons defeated Dodge City 89-85 in overtime on Saturday and then held off Garden City 65-58 on Monday.
Wednesday night won't be any easier against the Grizzlies, who didn't play on Monday and dominated Garden City 76-55 last Saturday.
Picked to finish seventh in the Jayhawk West preseason poll, the Grizzlies have gotten off to a great start at 13-2 overall and 1-0 in the Jayhawk West. Butler has reeled off nine-straight victories
Last season Hutchinson snapped a three-game losing streak at the Power Plant with a 66-64 victory, which also snapped a four-game losing streak to the Grizzlies.
The Blue Dragons (2-0 Jayhawk West) are off to their fourth-best start in team history, matching the Jayhawk West champion 2003-04 team at 16-0. Their current 16-game winning streak is the tied for the ninth longest in team history.
After completing its current stretch of games, HCC will have its first conference bye on Saturday and play host to Barton next Wednesday at the Sports Arena.
Barton game will feature Chili/Ice Cream Feed
Before Hutchinson's game with No. 9 Barton on Jan. 16, the Blue Dragon Athletic Department will have it's annual Chili/Ice Cream Feed in the Sports Arena's small gym.
The Feed is from 5 to 7 p.m. Adults are $6 with kids under the age of 12 $4 and pre-school kids eat free. It's all you can eat chili, hot dogs and ice cream donated by Blue Bunny Ice Cream.
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 1,613-556, a winning percentage of .743 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
With the No. 1 and No. 2 teams falling over Christmas break, the Blue Dragons are now No. 2 in this week's NJCAA Men's Division I Basketball Poll.
This is the sixth-straight poll that the Blue Dragons have been ranked in the Top 10 after starting the season ranked No. 13 in the preseason poll.
This is the highest the Blue Dragons have been ranked in two seasons.
After a one-year absence from the preseason poll, the Blue Dragons returned this season. It's the second time in head coach Steve Eck's four seasons that the Blue Dragons are ranked in the preseason NJCAA poll.
Last season, the Blue Dragons were unranked in the preseason poll, but started the season 10-0 and climbed all the way to No. 8. That marked the sixth-straight season that the Blue Dragons have appeared in an NJCAA regular-season poll.
Two seasons ago, the Blue Dragons started the season ranked No. 4 in the preseason poll and climbed all the way to No. 1 in early January after starting the season with 17-straight victories. HCC spent two weeks at No. 1 before finishing the season ranked No. 25.
Start ties for fourth best in Blue Dragon history
Fast starts in the under the Steve Eck watch have been nothing new to the Blue Dragons.
This season's 16-0 start ties for the fourth best in team history, matching the Jayhawk West champion 2003-04 Blue Dragons.
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 ties for ninth longest in history
Hutchinson's current 16-game winning streak ties for the ninth longest in program history.
The current win streak is tied with the 2003-04 Blue Dragons, a team that captured the Jayhawk West championship.
The Blue Dragons have had 33 winning streaks of 10 or more games in program history. The longest win stream in HCC history is 24 games, which was done twice in 1967-68 and 1974-75.
About the 2012-13 Blue Dragons
+ The Blue Dragons average 84.1 points per game offensively. HCC is shooting 49.1 percent overall and has shot 50 percent or better in seven times this season. The Dragons are shooting 32.3 percent from 3-point range and is 67.8 percent from the foul line. HCC is second in scoring offense, field-goal percentage and 3-point percentage in the Jayhawk West and leads the league in free-throw percentage.
+ Defensively, the Blue Dragons rank seventh in scoring defense at 68.6 points per game. Opponents are shooting 39.5 percent overall and 28.4 percent from 3-point range. HCC leads the Jayhawk West in 3-point defense and is second in field goal defense.
+ Freshman guard Kadeem Allen, a two-time Jayhawk Conference men's basketball player of the week, is fourth in the Jayhawk West in scoring at 15.7 points per game. He has scored in double figures in 13 of 14 games played this season, averaging 19.0 points per game over his last five games. Allen is shooting 44.2 percent from the field and 70.3 percent from the foul line.
+ Coming off his third 20-point game of the season, sophomore guard A.J. Spencer ranks sixth in the Jayhawk West in field-goal percentage at 59.9 percent. He is 11th in the league in scoring at 14.7 points per game. Spencer is also second in the league in free-throw shooting at 84.2 percent. Spencer is averaging 5.9 rebounds.
+ Sophomore forward Alex Davis has three double-doubles this season and averages 13.8 points per game with a team-high 7.4 boards per game, which is tied for sixth in the Jayhawk West. Davis is shooting 50.3 percent and is averaging 2.3 assists, 2.3 blocked shots and 1.2 steals per game. Davis is tied for second in the Jayhawk West in blocked shots.
+ HCC will be without the services of sophomore point guard D'Von Campbell, a UTEP transfer, for an undetermined amount of time because of injury. He missed Monday's Garden City game. Campbell averaged 11.4 point and 3.9 assists, which is eighth in the Jayhawk West. He was shooting 40.0 percent from 3-point range with 16 3-pointers.
+ The Blue Dragon bench is averaging 21.4 points. Freshman Tafari Whittingham, who started on Monday for Campbell, is averaging 9.1 points and sophomore Dre Henley is averaging 6.5 points off the bench.
+ Henley is seventh in the Jayhawk West in field-goal percentage at 57.9 percent and Whittingham is eighth at 52.4 percent.
+ The Blue Dragons have out-rebounded only 7 of 16 opponents this season. HCC is a plus-0.8 in rebounding advantage, out-rebounding opponents 39.9-39.1. The Blue Dragons are averaging 13.7 offensive rebounds per game. Monday's minus-11 rebounding margin against Garden City is the worst of the season.
+ The Blue Dragons average 18.6 assists per game and 9.6 steals.
+ Hutchinson averages 15.2 turnovers and forcing opponents into 20.1 turnovers per game.
+ HCC is 14-0 at the Sports Arena this season, averaging 83.8 points per game.
+ HCC is 2-0 on the road this season, averaging 86.5 points per game.
+ Butler coach Mike Bargen is the son of Blue Dragon coaching great Gary Bargen, who is a member of the HCC Quarterback Club Hall of Fame.
+ The Grizzlies enter Wednesday's game riding a nine-game winning streak. The only games Butler has lost this season were back-to-back road contests to Coffeyville and Northern Oklahoma-Tonkawa. The losses were by a total of seven points.
+ Butler is a much-improved offensive team this season, ranking third in the Jayhawk West at 81.3 points per game. Last season, the Grizzlies averages just more than 74 points per game. Butler is shooting a league-best 50.6 percent and is sixth in 3-point percentage at 32.1 percent. The Grizzlies rank eighth in free-throw percentage at 61.8 percent.
+ The 2013 Grizzlies are also a lot better defensively. Last season Bargen's team allowed 73.5 points per game. This season Butler is allowing just 64.5 points per game. Opposing teams are shooting 40.7 percent overall and 28.6 percent from 3-point range.
+ Butler's offense is balanced with only two players averaging in double figures, but seven averaging at least seven points per game and nine averaging at least five points per game.
+ Sophomore Sean Osler is Butler's leading scorer at 11.9 points per game. Trent Richardson averages 10.3 points. Eric Watson is third at 9.8 points per game.
+ Richardson and Jordan Madrid-Andrews (7.9 ppg) rank Nos. 2 and 3, respectively in the Jayhawk West in field-goal percentage. Richardson is shooting 64.8 percent while Madrid-Andrews is shooting 3.9 percent.
+ Watson is the top 3-point shooter in terms of percentage at 46.8 percent. He has a team-high 22 treys.
+ The Grizzlies are averaging 39.8 rebounds per game, while allowing a 31.2 boards, second-best in the league. Osler is the team's top rebounder at 5.0 boards per game.
+ The Grizzlies average 14.9 assists per game. Shomari Triggs is sixth in the league in assists at 3.92 assists per game.
+ Butler takes care of the ball, turning it over only 14.9 times per game, while forcing 18.5 turnovers per game.
+ The Grizzlies are 8-0 at the Power Plant this season, outscoring opponents 86.3-60.0.
Series history against Butler
This will be the 176th meeting between Hutchinson and Butler in a series that began in 1929.
Butler is one of four opponents that the Blue Dragons have at least 100 victories against. HCC is 115-60 overall against the Grizzlies.
HCC is 61-21 in games played in Hutchinson and 46-14 in games played at the Sports Arena. HCC is 45-35 in El Dorado. The Dragons own a 9-4 advantage in Region VI meetings with the Grizzlies.