Dragons break 3-game losing streak

By Bailey Terry

Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - Bashier Ahmed, Bronx, N.Y. gets the offensive rebound to then put up a shot to help HCC beat Colby Community College on Jan. 17.
Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - Bashier Ahmed, Bronx, N.Y. gets the offensive rebound to then put up a shot to help HCC beat Colby Community College on Jan. 17.

After three straight losses, two at home and one on the road, the Blue Dragons have broken their losing streak. They beat the Colby Trojans on Jan. 17, at home, 101-70,

making the Dragons’ record 15-4 overall and 2-3 in the Jayhawk West Conference.

Two players on the Dragon team had at least 20 points. Those players were Bashier Ahmed, Bronx, N.Y., and DeShawn Freeman, Rocky Mount, N.C.

This was Ahmed’s third straight 20 point game; he had a total of 23 points and a season-high of 15 rebounds, giving him his fifth double-double of the season. Ahmed scored 17 of his points in the first half. He tied his season-high of four steals.

Freeman had 20 points and nine rebounds, just one board away from a double-double. He was shooting 50% from the floor and 67% from the free throw line. He also had a season-high of five assists.

Head Coach Eck changed the starting line-up, adding Keanu Pinder, Perth, Australia, for his first career start. Pinder had a season high of 16 points, making seven of nine shots, and blocking five shots. He also had nine rebounds.

Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - Akbar Hoffman, Newark, N.J., puts up a shot against the Colby Trojans on Jan. 17.
Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - Akbar Hoffman, Newark, N.J., puts up a shot against the Colby Trojans on Jan. 17.

Another player who starts, Austin Budke, Beloit, had 14 points and four rebounds, while Che Bob had 10 points and five rebounds off the bench.

The Dragons, as a team, had a season-high of 27 assists. Zack Winter, Andover, had a career-high of 10 assists without a single turnover.

The Dragons were five of 13 from behind the arc and 18-25 from the free throw line.

HCC out rebounded the Trojans 54-28.

At the start of the game, the Dragons an early 12-2 run giving them a 16-7 lead with 15 minutes left in the opening half. The Trojans were able to cut the lead to just 19-17 with the Dragons barely holding their lead with 10 minutes remaining. After a basket from Ahmed, the Dragons had a small run, 6-2, holding the lead with four minutes remaining.

The Dragons finished the opening half on another run, 13-5. The score at halftime was 45-33.

The Dragons’ second half was one of their best halves of the season so far with HCC shooting 60% and outscoring the Trojans 56-37 in the closing half.

Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - DeShawn Freeman, Rocky Mount, NC, flies high to block an opponents shot, to help HCC beat Colby Community College on Jan. 17.
Darriell Rhodes /Collegian - DeShawn Freeman, Rocky Mount, NC, flies high to block an opponents shot, to help HCC beat Colby Community College on Jan. 17.

The Dragons opened the half with yet another big run, 10-2, diminishing the chances of a Trojan comeback.

The Dragons lead grew to 20 points at the 16 minute mark, making the score 55-35.

The Trojans were able to get within 17 before the Dragons had a run of scoring 9-3, with a lead of 71-48. As the game went on, a shot from inside the lane by Jaylen Robertson, Clinton, N.C., helped the Dragons past the 100-point mark with under a minute remaining.

The Dragons play at home against Cloud County on Jan. 24.

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