DEFENSE POWERS LADY DRAGONS IN FIRST GAME AS NATION'S TOP TEAMJanuary 10, 2013
EL DORADO – The Hutchinson Community College women’s basketball team turned in yet another defensive gem on Wednesday and passed its first test as the No. 1 ranked basketball team in the nation.
The top-ranked Lady Dragons held Butler 33 points under its scoring average on its own floor and pulled away in the second half for a key 58-45 Jayhawk West victory at Butler’s Power Plant.
Hutchinson (17-0, 3-0 Jayhawk West) extends its regular-season winning streak to 58 games and its Jayhawk Conference winning streak to 31 games. The Lady Dragons have defeated Butler five consecutive times.
The Lady Dragons held an opponent to less than 50 percent shooting for the 81st-straight time and their 10th opponent this season to less than 30 percent shooting. Using multiple switching defenses, the Lady Dragons limited the Grizzlies (12-4, 0-2) to just 27.3 percent shooting (15 of 55) and a season-low offensive output. Butler came into the game averaging 78 points per game.
For the second-straight game, the Lady Dragons clamped down on one of the Jayhawk West’s top scorers. This time, Butler’s Jamillah Bonner – the league’s second-leading scorer at 19.7 points per game – scored just five points on 2 of 14 shooting.
Offensively, freshman Jamie Patrick posted her second career double-double, scoring 18 points and a season-high 12 rebounds. Patrick hit 3 of 8 from 3-point range and she added two steals.
Sophomore Jasmine Patterson had her second double-double of the season and third of her career with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Patterson, who was in foul trouble, started the game 0 of 8 before hitting her final four shots of the game.
Sophomore Aja Sorrells had nine points and six rebounds. Sophomore Chrisstasia Walter had eight points, seven rebounds, seven assists and two steals.
HCC was held to season lows in points and field-goal percentage, shooting 33.3 percent (21 of 63). The Lady Dragons hit 5 of 21 from 3-point range and 11 of 18 from the free-throw line. HCC out-rebounded Butler 53-41 and turned the ball over 20 times.
Ashlee Ivy led the Grizzlies with 12 points Carly Bettencort and Katie Anderson had 10 points each.
The Grizzlies were 3 of 15 from the 3-point line and 12 of 21 from the foul line. Butler had 20 turnovers.
Defense dominated the first half. HCC shot 30.3 percent and Butler just 25.8 percent. The Lady Dragons held Butler to just one field goal over the first 8 minutes, 49 seconds in building a 10-7 lead after a pair of Patrick 3s and a Sorrells bucket.
The Lady Dragons then went ice cold as Butler went on a 7-1 run over the next 4 minutes to take its largest lead of the game at 14-10 with 9:40 to play after an Ivy steal and layup.
There were four lead changes and four ties in the first half. With the game tied at 18-all, Patrick scored with 2:48 left and Bri Starks scored on HCC’s next possession. The teams traded baskets for the remainder of the game and HCC took a 24-22 lead at halftime.
Hutchinson started the second half on a 9-1 run. Patrick drilled a 3-pointer to build a 33-23 lead with 15:06 remaining. The Grizzlies didn’t score their first field goal until the 14:40 mark of the second half.
The Lady Dragon defense never let Butler get on a big run. With HCC leading 43-32, Bonner converted a three-point play and Bettencort scored for a 5-0 run to pull within 43-37 with 8:04 to go.
Freshman Kiarra Jones scored on a putback to stem the Grizzly roll, and then Patterson got untracked offensively to finish off the victory. Patterson’s first basket of the game with 6:05 to play pushed the Lady Dragon lead to 48-39. Patterson scored four-straight buckets for HCC, the final coming at the 1:19 mark to give HCC a 54-43 lead. Butler had just two free throws over the final 2:50 of the game.
The Lady Dragons will have their first conference bye on Saturday and will play host to Barton next Wednesday at the Sports Arena.
GAME NOTES – HCC’s 17-game winning streak is the third longest in program history. … HCC’s 17-0 start is the third longest in HCC history behind last seasons’ 36-0 start and the 1977 Region VI champions’ 26-0 start. … HCC is now 48-27 vs. Butler all time. … This was all-time win No. 796 for HCC. … HCC has led at halftime in all 17 games this season. … The 53 rebounds per third most this season. … HCC outscored Butler 20-7 in points off turnovers and 22-5 in second-chance points.