By The Collegian staff

The Hutchinson Community College men’s basketball team, which won last year’s NJCAA national championship, will be given the chance to defend its title.

The Blue Dragons were granted one of eight at-large bids by the NJCAA on Monday during a live tournament selection show. The Blue Dragons finished the regular season 28-6, and runner-up in Region 6 and the Jayhawk Conference. Coffeyville earned Region 6’s automatic bid with a thrilling 82-80 win the championship game Wednesday.

The Blue Dragons are the No. 11 seed and will play Cape Fear at noon on March 20 at the Sports Arena.

This will be Hutchinson’s 21st NJCAA Tournament appearance and will be there for the fourth time in five years. Hutchinson has reached the last two national-championship games, losing to Salt Lake in 2016 and beating Eastern Florida State last season.

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