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Saints Secure Season Sweep of Cougars

KSCB News - February 14, 2016 8:48 am

The Seward County Saints finished off a regular season sweep of the Barton Cougars Saturday night in front of a big Homecoming Greenhouse crowd. Opposite of what has happened too many times to Seward this season, this time it was the Saints having a big second half on the offensive end, outscoring Barton 46-38 to come away with a heated 86-82 victory.

Early on it was a highly competitive battle with the two teams playing to a 9-9 tie four minutes in. Delano Jones hit a three to break the tie for the Saints and another Jones triple moments later made it 17-10 Saints at the 15 minute mark of the half. A 10-0 Barton run midway through the half gave the Cougars the 29-21 advantage, but an 8-0 Saints romp three minutes later had them back on top 34-32 with 4:42 left in the half. But it was Barton getting hot once again before the half and despite a late three from Charles Beauregard, the Cougars took a 44-40 lead into the break at half.

Barton dominated on the inside in the first 20 minutes of action, outrebounding Seward 26-8 and scoring 22 points in the painted area. The Saints however, hung around thanks to a 56% shooting half that included 6 of 12 from downtown. Beauregard led the Saints in the first half with 12 points off the Seward bench.

A pair of early threes from Jones put the Saints back on top as the second half got underway and it started a back and forth that saw the two teams knotted at 50 with 15:22 to go. Barton went up by seven moments later, but couldn’t hold the lead as Seward stormed back, as they did in their first meeting of the year with the Cougars, on the back of Stevenson who scored six straight for the Saints to make it a three point game, 59-56 with 11:54 remaining. Barton remained in front by five at 66-61 at the second half stoppage, but the Saints came out of the break firing and quickly tied the score up at 66. The game remained tied at 68, 70, 73, and 75 as Stevenson and former teammate Derek Dorn went back and forth with the clock ticking under 3:00 to play. Stevenson made what could have been the most electrifying play of the year with the Saints down three, slamming home a one handed dunk in traffic while being fouled to tie the game again after the Saints fell behind by three. The re-energized Greenhouse fed off of the play as Seward then got another three from a fired up Jones to make it 83-79 and they never trailed again. Up by two with 27 seconds left, Beauregard got a huge steal after a Barton inbounds and was fouled, making two free throws to put the game on ice. The Saints wrapped it up with a free throw from Jones as they took the win to the bank with an 86-82 final.

The Saints finished the game shooting 55% from the field while Barton shot 46% on the night. Seward’s defense forced the Cougars into 23 turnovers which they turned into 28 points. The Saints win despite being outrebounded 42-22 in the contest. Stevenson put together a huge 21 point second half to finish with a game high 29 while Jones and Beauregard each had 18 for the Saints.

Seward snaps a three game losing streak with the victory, improving to 18-8 overall and 9-7 in Jayhawk Conference play with the win. The Saints jump into a 5th place tie with Barton, but have the tiebreaker after sweeping the season series. Seward remains 1 ½ games behind Dodge City for the #4 spot. Barton’s struggles continue as they have now lost 8 of their last 12 to fall to 17-11 on the year while seeing their Jayhawk Conference mark fall to 9-8 where they would be the #6 seed if the Region VI Playoffs were to start today.

The Saints continue a busy stretch on Monday when they make the long trip to Northwest Kansas to take on the Colby Trojans for the first of two straight Monday contests with them. The Saints and Trojans will tip it off at 8:00 from the Community Building.

SEWARD COUNTY/BARTON BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/mbkb/2015-16/boxscores/20160213_fntk.xml>

Roy Allen

 

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