The Barton Community College men's basketball team owned second half action Wednesday in Goodland to rally from a four point deficit earning an 80-71 win at Northwest Kansas Technical College.
The Cougars' rebound from a home loss last time on the hard court improved the conference mark to 7-3 and 16-3 overall headed to Saturday's 8:00 p.m. tip off at conference leader and No. 13 ranked Seward County Community College. Northwest Tech slips to 2-9 in league play with a .500 season record of 10-10.
The Mavericks strung together a pair of big runs to eventually lead by four at the break, rattling off ten straight to tie the game up at the media timeout before an eleven straight in the final four minutes for a six point advantage was interrupted by a pair of Tyrell Andrews free throws. Andrews would finish with six points on the night including a big offensive put-back later in second half play giving Barton an eight point lead with two minutes remaining.
Barton stormed out of the locker room scoring the first eleven points, getting five from Diovonte Caldwell including a deep trey giving Barton the lead for good just two minutes into the final frame.
Consecutive inside buckets by Akeem White increased the lead to eleven at the second half media but the Cougars would go cold for the next seven minutes.
Defense over the drought stretch kept the margin manageable as White's pair of tosses stopped the famine with 2:45 pushing Barton's lead out to 65-58.
The Cougars did their part at the stripe down the stretch to counter Maverick buckets before the final sixty seconds was a show of uncontested hoops.
Coming up with a pair of defensive gems during Barton's scoring drought including a shot rejection and drawing a charge, Elijah Ford was also a beast on the offensive end setting a new career high with twenty-seven points while grabbing eleven rebounds for the New Jersey sophomore's third double-double of the year. John Williams, who keyed Barton's 10-0 run to get the Cougars tied at the first half media, scored all of his thirteen points in the opening twenty points. Keying the second half early surge, Caldwell pumped in eleven in the final frame in finishing with eleven.