by Alan Hoskins
The home court never looked better to Kansas City Kansas Community College’s basketball teams after being swept at Highland Saturday.
Playing their second Top Five team on the road in four days, the 13th ranked Blue Devil women dropped a 74-57 decision to the No. 5 ranked Lady Scotties while the Blue Devil men fell 81-73 in their 16th road contest in 22 games this season.
Both teams are back home for two games this week. Brown Mackie comes in Wednesday for games at 5 and 7 p.m. with Hesston to follow Saturday at 2 and 4 p.m.
Free throws and 3-point goals doomed the Lady Blue Devils in a foul-marred opener. Whistled for 32 fouls, the Blue Devils lost three players on fouls and had two others with four each and were outscored 20-12 from the free throw line. Highland was called for 27 fouls but KCKCC was able to convert only 10 of 27 foul shots for 37 percent while Highland made 21 of 39 (.538).
KCKCC actually matched the Scotties in field goals at 22 and had 10 more shots but Highland (21-1) also made 9 of 20 three-points to 3 of 13 for KCKCC (18-4). The Blue Devils (18-4) also had a 36-34 rebounding edge but committed 27 turnovers, one more than Highland. Imani White led KCKCC with 19 points and seven rebounds and Iland Shurn led all rebounders with nine but Rashaun Casey was the only other Blue Devil with more than six points, scoring eight.
Leading 37-36 at halftime, Highland’s men (11-11) pulled away in the second half in the nightcap. As in the opener, fouls hurt KCKCC as the Blue Devils lost one player on fouls and had four others with four each. That negated a 26-24 KCKCC edge in field goals as the Scotties converted 21 of 35 free throws to 12 of 20 for KCKCC. Highland also drained 12 of 28 three-pointers to 9 of 18 for KCKCC.
Freshmen Marcus Allen and Lucas Smith led KCKCC (6-16), Allen with 22 points and 11 rebounds and Smith with 20 points and six rebounds. Stephen Leimbach and Anthony Ridley added eight points each and Collin Adney seven. Ridley also led in assists with four. Teamwise, KCKCC had a .473-.453 edge in field goal shooting, Highland had the edge in rebounds 38-32 and turnovers were almost dead even (14-13).