By Bailey Terry
For the Blue Dragon basketball team’s last game of the regular season, they hosted the Seward County Saints on Feb. 25 and won 88-82.
Their record is now 24-6 overall and 11-5 in the Jayhawk West.
DeShawn Freeman, Rocky Mount, N.C., finished the game with the most points for the Dragons with 28.
He also pulled down nine rebounds.
Bashier Ahmed, Bronx, N.Y., had 17 points for the Dragons.
During the first half the Dragons stayed ahead the entire game.
The score at halftime was 41-35 with the Dragons barely ahead.
As the second half opened, the Dragons built their lead with a 23-10 run; the Dragons ahead, 64-48 with just 10 minutes to go.
The Saints weren’t going away completely, being down 21-points, 74-53, the Saints first went on a 12-6 run then continued to score 12 points without an answer from the Dragons, 80-77 with just one minute to go.
Hutch continued to pull a few more points ahead, but Seward County would score and make the score within 3.
The Dragons finished the game by scoring enough to make it a 3-possession game.
The Dragons won 88-82, just six points ahead.
Hutch traveled to Concordia to play the Thunderbirds of Cloud County on Feb. 21 and won, 71-67.
Ahmed was the Dragon who scored the most points with 17—also had seven rebounds. He was 50% from the three-point range.
Austin Budke, Beloit, ended his final regular season game at Hutch with 16 points, three rebounds, and three assists.
He was 7 for 12 overall with shooting.
Keanu Pinder, Perth, Australia, had 10 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, two steals, and two blocked shots, while Freeman had nine points, eight rebounds, and season-high of six assists.
The Dragons made 23 of 51 field goals, 5 for 15 from three-point range, and 20 for 30 from the free throw line.
To start off the game, there were six lead changes in just four minutes.
The Dragons led 16-13 with just under fifteen minutes remaining.
The Dragons continued their strong start and got the lead up to 10 points, 25-15.
Hutch missed 15 of 20 of their final first half shots, allowing the Thunderbirds to come within four points, 30-26 to close the first half.
Opening the second half, the Thunderbirds were within two points, 34-32.
The Dragons answered with a 13-point run with 13 minutes remaining, 47-34.
The Thunderbirds also went on a 13-point run, 49-47.
The Dragons went scoreless for almost five minutes, but Hutch never gave up the lead.
With four minutes to go in the game, the game was tied at 56.
Then the Dragons went on at 8-0 run with three minutes left, 64-56.
The score was 69-67 with 40 seconds to go, the Thunderbirds had the chance to tie or take the lead.
Instead the pass was thrown out of bounds with just 10 seconds remaining.
Allowing the Dragons to score once more and end the game, 71-67.
The Dragons will open the Region VI tournament on Feb. 28 at 7 p.m., ranked at No. 5.