by Alan Hoskins, KCKCC
Two big second half scoring runs sent Kansas City Kansas Community College down to an 83-64 loss to Northern Oklahoma College in Tonkawa Tuesday.
Trailing 40-28 at the half, the Blue Devils closed their deficit to 54-49 with just over 10 minutes remaining only to have the Mavericks put together a 13-2 run in opening a 69-51 lead. KCKCC again closed to 70-58 only to be outscored 11-2 in the final minutes.
The win boosted Northern Oklahoma’s record to 11-5 while KCKCC fell to 4-11 heading into the Blue Devil Classic this coming weekend. Fort Scott and Metropolitan Community College open the Classic Friday at 5:30 p.m. with KCKCC taking on On Point Academy at 7:30 p.m.
Three games are on tap Saturday including one women’s game. Fort Scott and On Point play at 2 p.m. with the KCKCC women (15-2) taking on NJCAA Division I McCook (11-4) at 4 p.m. KCKCC and Metropolitan will renew their long-time rivalry at 6 p.m.
Northern Oklahoma managed only 48 shots against KCKCC but converted 25 for 52.1 percent. The Mavericks also went to the free throw line a whopping 39 times, making 26. Trevion Lamar led the Mavs with 29 points including 13 of 14 free throws.
“This was a good game for us,” Mavericks’ coach Donnie Jackson said. “KCKCC is a scrappy club that plays hard. They like to junk it up defensively and slow the pace offensively. They are also a very physical team. This was a game we needed to play.”
Sophomore Arother Ratliff had 12 points and freshman Cody Dortch 11 on 3-of-4 3 point shooting to lead KCKCC. Malcolm Tate added nine points, Calvin Slaughter seven and DuVonte’ Beard and Daiyon Taylor six each for the Blue Devils. Kelyn Bolton led rebounding with four.
The Blue Devils were 19-of-42 from the field for 45.2 percent. Just 6-of-21 from 3-point (.286), the Blue Devils sizzled from the free throw line, converting 20-of-24 for 83.3 percent. KCKCC forced 17 Northern Oklahoma turnovers but were guilty of 20 of their own.