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Barton men unable to overcome a night of season lows in loss at Butler #GoBarton

Barton Men's Basketball result at Butler Community College

The Barton Community College men's basketball team was unable to overcome an evening of season lows on the road Monday night falling to Butler Community College 56-49 inside the Power Plant.

The fourth straight loss in the series sends the Cougars into the holiday break in a fifth place tie of the Jayhawk Conference at 4-4 and receiving votes in the latest national poll at 9-5 overall while Butler avoids a third straight loss improving to 5-4 in league play and 11-4 overall.

Playing five of its first eight conference games on the road, Barton's next action comes Wednesday, January 4th, with another road trip in heading to Liberal, KS to take on the Saints of Seward County Community College (4-5, 7-5) in a 8:00 p.m. tip inside the Greenhouse.  The Cougars will then hosting Northwest Kansas Technical College on Saturday, January 7, in a 4:00 p.m. tip.

Posting their lowest mark of the season while hitting the lowest single and combined output in the 104 game series, things only got worse for the Cougars tying their lowest shooting mark of the season 32-percent (17-of-53) tagging along a freezing 40-percent (12-of-30) performance from the charity stripe. While the lows added up for Barton, the Grizzlies were not much better concluding with a 38-percent (18-47) shooting mark from the floor while connecting on 19 of their 31 tries at the free throw line for a 61-percent finish.

A trio of Cougars reached double-figure scoring led for the sixth time by Joseph Locandro's near double-double outing 13 points and team high nine rebounds in 19-minutes of action. Fresh off a career high 24-point performance in Saturday's victory, Cooper Jackson touched double-figures for the second straight game adding 12-points and recording five thefts for the sixth straight game of three or more steals in raising his team leading average to 3.2 in ranking second most in the Region VI thus far. Mozae Downing-Rivers rounded out the double-figure scoring adding 11 and pulling down eight boards.

Tahjae Hill and Isaac Ondekane led all scorers each adding 16-points with Ondekane leading a Grizzlies 19-4 edge in points off the bench. Isaiah Williams concluded the double-figure scoring for Butler adding 10 points while Treylon Payne collected nine rebounds helping the Grizzlies to a plus-eight edge on the glass.

Back-to-back Locandro and Cougar Downing treys produced Barton's first lead of 10-7 at the 15:25 mark of the opening half. A five straight response by Butler put the Grizzlies back out front by nothing greater of four over the next 10-minutes. Owning the next four minutes with Hannes Saar recording just one of Barton's four perfect trips from the free throw line on the evening, a succeeding Jackson trey supplied Barton just its' second lead of the opening stanza 26-25. Butler grabbed the final two points of the final minute taking a 27-26 lead into the locker rooms.

Following a Grizzlies bucket to open the final 20-minutes, the Cougars fashioned their final lead of the night 30-29 over the next two minutes with back-to-back Locandro and Downing baskets with 18:13 to play. An 8-0 Butler response over the next two minutes off the clock and a 1-for-6 stretch from the charity strip by Barton in a 10-second stretch would expand the Grizzlies lead out to seven and eventually as many as eight with 12:51 to play.

Remaining within eight, the Cougars climbed back within one possession on a trio of occasions backed behind a 4-0 and later 3-0 stretch but the missed opportunities lingered unable to draw any closer of three. Barton's final hope skidded away in the final minute coughing the ball up on back-to-back possessions with Hill putting the game on ice for Butler knocking down an eight-foot fade away jumper to beat the shot clock buzzer to go up four with 22-seconds left.

Barton held without a field goal over the final 6:05 and scoreless over the final two minutes, the Grizzlies placed the final touches knocking down a pair of free throws in the final twelve tics.