Monday, February 24, 2014

KCKCC women clinch home playoff berth; men nipped 61-60


KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- Kansas City Kansas Community College will host a first round women’s Division II playoff game Saturday at 2 p.m. The Lady Blue Devils (22-7) wrapped up the home court berth this past Saturday with a 67-56 win at Hesston.

The win assured KCKCC (4-5) of no worse than a third place tie in the Jayhawk heading into the final regular season game of the year Wednesday when the Blue Devils host Fort Scott (1-8) in a doubleheader at 5 and 7 p.m. Ironically, Fort Scott is the most likely first round playoff opponent on Saturday.

The Blue Devil men, meanwhile, will open playoff action on the road after suffering yet another crushing loss 61-60 at Hesston. Depending on Wednesday’s season ending games, KCKCC will play at either Fort Scott or Hesston on Saturday.

Leading 35-34 at halftime at Hesston, the Blue Devils pulled away in the second half by limiting the Lady Larks to just eight second half field goals and 28.9 percent shooting. Led by Julia Garrard, Rashaun Casey and Cassidy Harbert, KCKCC dominated the rebounding 46-30 to offset chilly 31.7 percent shooting.

Casey led the way with 16 points and eight rebounds while Garrard had a double double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Janai Mitchell added 10 points and five rebounds and Harbert eight rebounds, five points and four assists.

“Rashaun played well and Julia had her second straight double,” said KCKCC Coach Valerie Stambersky. Wednesday’s home game against Fort Scott will be Sophomore Night with Bailey West, Jamisha Crawford and injured Samantha Hurst honored in pre-game ceremonies.

KCKCC’s men’s one-point loss came on the heels of two-point losses to Johnson County and Highland.

“We had three chances to win, a last second shot and two tips,” said KCKCC Coach Kelley Newton.

Leading 29-26 at halftime, the Blue Devils (6-23) were still up by four points late only to be undone by critical turnovers and 32.8 percent shooting.

KCKCC got a big performance from Marcus Allen, who scored 23 points and grabbed nine rebounds while Clay Young added 12 points and six rebounds, Stephen Leimbach nine points and five rebounds, Lucas Smith nine rebounds and Anthony Ridley five points and six assists.