by Alan Hoskins, KCKCC
Kansas City Kansas Community College had the misfortune of running into Labette at the most inappropriate time Saturday.
The Cardinals broke loose with one of their best shooting performances of the season on the way to an 85-50 win.
It was Labette’s third straight win and improved the Cardinals’ Jayhawk Conference record to 4-2 while KCKCC (2-3) dropped to fourth place in the conference behind Labette. The Blue Devils are 12-13 overall.
The Blue Devils are right back in action Monday, playing a makeup game at second place Johnson County at 7:30 p.m.
Highland (5-1) moved past JCCC (4-1) into first place Saturday with an 82-68 home court win. Highland is 23-2 overall; the Cavaliers 24-4.
Monday night’s game is one of three for the Blue Devils this week. They’ll play host to Hesston at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at KCKCC Academic Success Night and then go to Fort Scott Saturday at 4 p.m.
Labette knocked down 33-of-62 shots from the field for 53.2 percent including a sizzling 12-of-26 from 3-point (.462) in the win over KCKCC.
Both shooting percentages were well above Labette’s seasonal averages. The Cardinals also had 18 assists on the 33 field goals, enjoyed a 34-26 advantage in rebounding and committed just 10 turnovers to 17 for KCKCC.
“The ball moved,” Labette coach Jerrod Stanford said. “Kansas City, Kansas plays a tough, matchup zone and man-to-man and if you don’t move the ball, they can lock you down. But we kept the ball moving so we were able to get to our spots. It’s a huge win. In conference play, as cliché as it is, you’ve got to take it one at a time and see how the chips fall.”
Shooting a crisp 52.4 percent from the field, KCKCC trailed just 41-32 at halftime but the Blue Devils fell off to 33.3 percent in being outscored 44-28 the second half.
Sophomore Arother Ratliff was the lone Blue Devil in double figures, scoring 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting including 2-of-3 three-pointers.
Kelyn Bolton added 8 points, Jonathan Richmond 7, Malcolm Tate and Calvin Slaughter 6 each and Cody Dortch 5. Taylor had seven rebounds and Slaughter four to lead KCKCC.