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2020-21 Men's Basketball News

  • CLUTCH SHOOTING LETS BLUE DEVILS HOLD OF METRO 90-83
    February 12, 2021
    Kansas City Kansas Community College got some clutch field goals they’d been desperately missing in ending a three-game losing streak Tuesday night. Getting 17 straight points from the duo of DeAngelo Bell and Bryce Johnson in the second half, the Blue Devils (3-5) held off repeated Metropolitan Community College challenges for a hard-earned 90-83 win. The Blue Devils led by 10 points early in the second half only to have the Wolves close to 68-65 midway through the second period when Johnson started the decisive run with a dunk. Bell followed with three 3-pointers in a span of less than two minutes for a 79-65 lead and Johnson and Bell made it 85-75, closing a 17-10 run with a pair of treys with four minutes left. But even then Metro twice closed to within four points and it took four Deron McDaniel free throws in the final two minutes to clinch it. “The guys stepped up and made shots but we have to do a better job of holding a lead,” said KCKCC Coach Brandon Burgette. “We gave up two 10-point leads.” Five Blue Devils finished in double figures led by sophomore Caleb Jones, who had yet another double double with 18 points and 12 rebounds. McDaniel added 16 points, Bell 15, Trey Bates 12 and Jermaine Yarbough.10. The Blue Devils also got a key performance from freshman Zack Nelson, who had game highs of eight assists and four steals. Bell’s 15 points came on 5-of-6 3-pointers while Yarbough had three dunks and a layup in a 2½- minute span in the first half. Yarbough’s four goals and five points by Nelson highlighted a surge that pushed KCKCC to a 29-20 lead only to have Metro go ahead 30-29 in a furious first half that had six ties and nine lead changes. The Blue Devils had a season low seven turnovers while forcing 16 by Metro that KCKCC turned into 23 points. “We did a good playing in transition,” said Burgette. “Metro played well and shot the ball well (47.1 percent). We just have to do a better job of rebounding and securing the glass.” Metro won the battle of the boards 43-36 with 19 of the rebounds coming offensively. The Blue Devils were a terrific 13-of-26 from 3-point and 14-of-26 (.538) in holding off Metro in the second half. The Blue Devils now go back on the road for their next three games starting at Southeast Nebraska Thursday at 7 p.m. They’ll also be at Park University’s JV Monday at 7 p.m. and they have a re-match with Metropolitan on the Penn Valley campus Feb. 18. PHOTO IDENT Metro defenders can only watch as Jermaine Yarbough delivers one of his three slam dunks in a 2-½ minute stretch of the first half in KCKCC’s 90-83 win over Metropolitan Tuesday night. (KCKCC Photo by Alan Hoskins)
  • DEEP BENCH HELPS BLUE DEVILS ROLL TO 99-73 WIN
    January 29, 2021
    For the first time this season, Kansas City Kansas Community basketball coach Brandon Burgette could relax in the closing minutes of a Blue Devil game Thursday night. Getting big production from a deep bench and shooting 53.9 percent from the field, the Blue Devils built leads of up to 28 points in a 99-73 win over Park University’s developmental team. The win evened KCKCC’s record at 2-2 in a season that has seen the first three games decided in the final minute and in two cases, the final seconds. The Blue Devils are right back in action tonight, playing William Penn’s JV at 7:30 p.m. in Oskaloosa, Iowa. The KCKCC women’s team will also play William Penn at 5:30 p.m. and both games will be streamed on the William Penn website. The one-sided win enabled Burgette to get a lot of production from a bench that provided nearly half (47 points) of the Blue Devil scoring and 16 of 23 assists. All 12 Blue Devils in uniform saw a least 11 minutes of action and 11 scored, 11 had assists and 10 had rebounds. Five Blue Devils scored in double figures led by sophomores Jermaine Yarbough, who had a career high 22 points and seven rebounds, and Caleb Jones, who had another double with 13 points and a game high 10 rebounds. Freshman Don’vae Ferguson just missed a double double with 14 points and 9 rebounds, both career highs; Deron McDaniel added 15 points, and Bryce Johnson 14 points in just 11 minutes. Basehor-Linwood freshman Conner Younger led in assists with five; Trey Bates had four and Ezekiel Lyons three and seven points, all off the bench. Guilty of a dozen first half turnovers (16 total), the Blue Devils led only 25-20 midway through the first half. McDaniel scored nine of KCKCC’s first 17 points to get the lead before Yarbough almost single handedly broke the game open, scoring 10 straight points on two layups and two 3-pointers to expand the lead to 35-22. The Blue Devils led 48-20 at halftime. “I think we let our guard down early,” said Burgette. “We have to come prepared no matter who we play and understand we have to compete and guard the right way. A good game, we are still learning and progressing. These games are getting us moving in the right direction.”
  • KCKCC Men drop home opener in a thriller
    January 26, 2021
    So much for opening a basketball season against a series of inferior teams. Playing the third quality opponent (and arguably the best) in six days, Kansas City Kansas Community College dropped a 70-68 decision to Link Year Prep in a fierce battle that went right down to the final shot Monday night. The loss came on the heels of a 118-115 double overtime loss at No. 6 ranked North Central Missouri last Wednesday and a 74-66 win at Central Nebraska in a game in which the Blue Devils rallied by scoring the final 11 points of the game. “We’re two possessions away from being 3-0,” said KCKCC Coach Brandon Burgette, never one to shy away from tough games. “We played well in moments but we’ve got to close out games and do a better job on the glass, especially against a team like Link Prep that is very talented.” Extremely talented. A post-graduate academy in Branson, Mo., geared to get high school graduates prepared for basketball at the highest level, the Lions’ roster included five players who have already committed to NCAA Division I schools and a quartet of players 6-7 or better who show-cased their athleticism with five jarring dunks. For 40 minutes, the two teams traded punches like a heavyweight bout – six ties and six lead changes in the final 16 minutes. KCKCC led by nine points early (18-9); Link Prep’s biggest lead was five to start the second half (36-31). The Blue Devils twice built 4-point leads in the final four minutes on 3-point goals by Jermaine Yarbough and Deron McDaniel but the Lions twice scored off offensive rebounds to forge a 66-66 tie and then went ahead 69-66 on Quaran McPherson’s second 3-pointer of the game with 1:44 left. After Yarbough got KCKCC back to 69-68 with 36 seconds to go, McPherson missed one of two free throws to open the door for the Blue Devils to win or tie only to have McDaniel’s heavily contested 3-pointer come up short. Caleb Jones led KCKCC with 16 points and a game high 11 rebounds but had to sit out crucial fourth quarter minutes with four fouls. Freshman Shayon Janloo added 14 points, Yarbough and McDaniel 9 each and Trey Bates 8. McPherson had 22 points for Link Prep. Because of the Lions’ size, the Blue Devils had to go to the perimeter for much of their scoring and they did it well – six players knocking down 10-of-21 3-pointers. McDaniel had three of the treys, Trey Bates and Janloo two each. KCKCC was 28-for-57 for 49.1 percent overall to .421 for Link Prep and turnovers were even 15-15. But the Lions’ size was the difference, a 37-29 rebound advantage including 13 off the offensive boards. “We have to do better,” said Burgette. “We did not do a good job rebounding and defending the glass nor did we give ourselves a chance to get second shots (7 offensive rebounds).” The Blue Devils are back in action Thursday when they host Park University JV in a women’s-men’s doubleheader starting at 5:30 p.m. Both games will be streamed on the KCKCC Blue Devil website. Both Blue Devil teams are also at William Penn Friday at 5:30 p.m.
  • KCKCC Men voted team to beat in 2021
    January 08, 2021
    Kansas City Kansas Community College’s defending Jayhawk Conference champions have been voted the team to beat in the 2021 men’s basketball pre-season poll. Jayhawk coaches voted the Blue Devils No. 1 followed by Johnson County, Highland, Labette, Fort Scott and Hesston. Labette, the defending Region VI champion, was tabbed No. 1 in the women’s poll followed by Johnson County, KCKCC, Highland, Fort Scott and Hesston. The KCKCC men return five veterans from the 2019-20 team that won the Jayhawk championship for the first time ever. The Blue Devils (18-13) finished 8-2 in conference play and won 16 of their last 21 games on the way to winning the NJCAA DII Region VI championship and KCKCC’s second berth in the national tournament, a tournament cancelled by the COVID pandemic. Starters returning include 6-7 forward Robert Rhodes, the Defender of the Year in the conference and runaway leader in rebounds and blocked shots; 6-0 guard Deron McDaniel, the team’s second leading scorer and assist leader; and point guard DeAngelo Bell, who was second in assists. Jermaine Yarbough, a 6-8 forward who was second in rebounding as the league’s best sixth man, is also back along with 3-point sharpshooter Cody Dortch, who is in his third season after suffering a torn ACL 11 games into the 2019-20 season. The KCKCC women are coming off a 25-7 season and third place finish (5-5) behind Labette and JCCC. Aliyah Myers, a 5-7 guard from Derby, returns as the only starter although the other returnees, 6-0 forward Mercer Roberts and 5-6 guards Tiara Earnest and Jada Mayberry played significant minutes in 2019-20. Both KCKCC teams open on the road at North Central Missouri in Trenton Jan. 20 and then go to Central Community College in Columbus, Neb. Jan. 23. The Blue Devil men will open at home against Link Year Prep Jan. 25 while both teams will be host to Park University’s JV Jan. 28