January seems light years ago for the #13 Seward County Saints after Saturday night’s 75-55 win over rival Garden City on their home floor. Seward struggled against the Busters in their first matchup, losing a rare home game, but the Saints dominated Garden from the opening tip Saturday to blow the Busters out of the water in the tune of a 75-55 victory to get within one game of another Jayhawk West Conference Championship.

Even without arguably the top junior college player in the country, Geron Johnson, who was dismissed from the team earlier in the week, the Broncbusters came out strong in front of a spirited home crowd in the Perryman Center. Garden City took an early 4-2 lead on four free throws, but unfortunately for the Busters, any good news for the night was done happening. The Saints went on a 14-0 run to go ahead 16-4 and led 21-6 before Garden City got their first field goal of the game with under 8 minutes to go in the half. Seward missed their chance to blow the game wide open late in the first half as they had their own problems finding the basket, but thanks to a stellar defensive effort, led 35-11 into the halftime break. The Saints forced 13 first half Garden City turnovers and took twice as many shots as the Busters (34-17). Seward ripped down 14 offensive rebounds which was as many as Garden City had as a team on both ends. The Saints held Garden to just 18% shooting in the period and only one Broncbuster had a single field goal in the first 20 minutes of play and that was Silas Mills Jr. who had just 3.
It looked like the second half was going to be more of the same as the Saints continued to baffle the Garden City offense and built their lead up to 30 within the first five minutes of the half. The Busters had their second player score a field goal with 14:56 to go in the half to break a streak of over 17 minutes that Seward held Garden City without a field goal. Yes, the same Garden City team that shot 57% against the Saints in their first meeting in the Greenhouse. Garden finally heated up and got within 13 as the Saints went into cruise control midway through the second half but Seward snapped back out of it and pushed their lead back to 20 which is where it was as the final horn sounded in a 75-55 Saints win.
The second half was a drastically different half than the first as Garden shot 50% from the field and the Saints hit 46% of their shots after the two combined for just 29% in the first 20 minutes. Daveon Boardingham had his best game since coming back from an ankle injury, scoring 20 points and adding 9 rebounds and 2 blocked shots. Irvin Hollinger brought his lunch pail to the arena yet again and finished with 18 points and 9 rebounds while Kaheem Ransom scored 12 and had 7 rebounds for the Saints.
Seward is now 23-5 overall and 11-3 in Jayhawk West Conference action. Their magic number to successfully defend their Jayhawk West Conference crown is now down to 2 with two games to go. Seward could clinch the title as soon as Wednesday if they can get a win over last place Butler and would need a Hutchinson loss at Cloud County to seal the deal. The Saints with championship aspirations in tow will host the Grizzlies on Wednesday at 8:00 in the Greenhouse. Before their game, the five Seward sophomores will be honored as part of Sophomore Recognition night festivities. Free tickets are available courtesy of our buyout sponsor Sharp, McQueen, PA. at their Liberal offices or at Pizza Hut and Express Lane.