The Seward County Community College men’s basketball team had its eight game winning streak snapped with a 65-55 loss to Lamar Community College, on Saturday night in the Pizza Hut Classic at the Green House in Liberal. Lamar’s bench out-scored the Saints 31-4, and the Runnin’ Lopes shot 9-for-18 from three-point territory to claim the non-conference victory in SCCC’s final game before the start of conference play. The Saints were held to their lowest point total of the season while finishing the non-conference portion of their schedule with a 12-2 overall mark. Lamar improves to 10-2 on the season.

Seward County got off to a slow start, but was carried offensively by sophomore Ervin Williams who scored 16 of the team’s first 19 points. Lamar posted its largest lead, 24-13, with 4:57 left to play before halftime.

Williams scored 16 of his game-high 18 points in the first half, where he was 8-of-11 shooting from the field. The Saints, who never led in the opening period, shot 32 percent in the first half, and received scoring from only three players as they went into halftime trailing 29-21.

Saints’ sophomore post Darko Cohadarevic heated up in the second half scoring all of his 16 points. Early in the period, Cohadarevic poured in eight points on three straight possessions which included a lay-up and back-to-back 3-pointers to tie the score at 31. Minutes later, Seward County took the lead for the first time when sophomore Nick Burns made his second 3-pointer of the game, giving Seward County a 34-33 lead with 14:30 left to play.

There were six lead changes and two ties over the next six minutes of play before Lamar took the lead for good on a Curtis Roundtree 3-pointer, with 8:05 left to play. The Saints made the score 55-58 with 3:06 to play when freshman Reggie Chamberlain connected on a 3-point field goal. The Saints wouldn’t score again and Lamar finished the game on a 7-0 run.

In addition, the Saints shot just four free throws (2-for-4), while Lamar was issued seven personal fouls in the contest.

Cohadarevic scored 16 points with 10 rebounds, collecting his second double-double of the season and fourth of his career. Burns had another big game for Seward County scoring 14 points with six assists, and five rebounds with four 3-pointers. In the Pizza Hut Classic, Burns averaged 21 points on a combined 15-of-29 shooting from the field and 10-for-17 shooting from three-point range. The sophomore from Portland, Ore., is now shooting 52 percent (33-for-64) from long range, ranking second in the nation among players with at least 33 three-point field goals made this season.

The Saints have finished their non-conference schedule and will now prepare for their Jayhawk West Conference home-opener on Jan. 2 at 7:30 p.m. against the two-time defending conference champions Dodge City Community College (7-5). The Conq’s have won the last three meetings verses Seward County, with the Saints’ last victory coming in their conference home-opener on Jan. 4, 2006 (77-71).

PIZZA HUT CLASSIC RESULTS:
The Brown Mackie Lions picked up the victory over Sterling College J.V., 82-44, on Saturday afternoon in the Green House. The Lions forced 30 turnovers and out-rebounded the Warriors, 54-29, in the 38 point victory. Brown Mackie was led by four players in double figure scoring, including Denarious Darby (14 points, eight rebounds, five steals), Tyrone Sheppard (13 points), Jacob Jordan (10 points, 10 rebounds) and Bryson Flax (10 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, three steals). Sterling College was led by Mark Swointek (10 points) and Brian Boarman (10 points).