The high scoring Barton Community College men’s basketball team were beat at its own game for the second straight game, taking an 89-76 whooping to Seward County Community College Saturday night at the Greenhouse in Liberal. Averaging a Region VI best 93.4 points per game and second in field goal percentage at over 50%, the No. 25 ranked Cougars went cold shooting a season low 40% from the field while allowing its opponent to shoot over 50% for the second straight game. The second straight loss and game away from the Barton Gym drops the Cougars into a second place tie in the Jayhawk West standings at 6-3 and 18-5 overall while Seward County improves to 4-5 and 11-11. Next up for the Cougars will be Dodge City Community College on Wednesday in a 7:30 p.m. tip at the Barton Gym.
Barton scored the first seven points and held a 10-5 lead behind threes from Jalin Barnes and Christian Smith before things started to unravel. Khalil Gracey‘s three regained a 13-12 lead for Barton but it did little to slow the Saints’ 20-8 run. Two Kenny Enoch threes and another Barnes’ trey drew the Cougars back to within three but the Saints closed out first half action outscoring Barton by five to lead 40-32.
Seward blew open the game early in the second half turning a seven point lead into a seventeen point edge going on an 18-4 run in a matter of about six minutes. The lead ballooned out to twenty-four before a charge led by Walker and the inside effort of Enoch grabbing multiple offensive rebounds cut the deficit to seventeen.
Barton would get to with ten with two minutes to play but with the Saints knocking down just enough free throws and the Cougars’ shooting woes, it was not going to be the comeback Cougar fans wished for.
Getting off to his second straight slow start to a game, Walker scored all of his twenty-four points in the second half to lead only three Cougars in double digits. Adding a game high twelve rebounds, the Jayhawk West’s leading scorer recorded his seventh double-double on the season and led Barton with seven assists and tied three others for the team lead with two steals. Barnes’ 50% shooting including 3-of-5 from behind the arc contributed to his seventeen points while Enoch finished with sixteen.
Kevin Sims’ career high twenty-six points including a 13-of-17 effort from the charity stripe paced four Saints in double figures. Nick Singleton scored sixteen with a team high seven boards while Tyreke Sharp and Secean Johnson scored twelve and ten points respectively. Just missing double-digits was Evan Allen finishing with nine points leading the Saints in assists with eight.